SINCE becoming a new dad ten weeks ago, Matthew Clatworthy has spent his fair share of time at the Oxford Children’s Hospital as his son Harry battles a kidney condition.

Mr Clatworthy, from Witney, has decided to sign up for the Oxford Mail OX5 Run for Harry and all other the children who benefit from its care.

The ten-week-old has been in and out of hospital for much of his short life so far with urinary tract infections (UTIs) after being born with kidney reflux, a condition which affects the valves between the bladder and kidneys.

Mr Clatworthy, 37, who also has a stepson, James, four, said: “Harry will be going up to the hospital who knows how many more times and it’s nice to help out and give something back.

“The staff have been really good, particularly the first time we went up. It was a very stressful time and with another child as well it was so difficult.

“It’s a great atmosphere, especially at Christmas – they were brilliant with all the kids.

“They saved a bed for him and let us take him home and when we went back at 7am on Christmas morning there was a stocking for him.”

Last Tuesday Harry had a successful follow up operation to his most recent urinary infection, but his dad said there were most tests and visits to the hospital to come.

The kitchen designer hoped to assemble a five-man team to tackle the Blenheim Palace five-mile course on Sunday, March 29, to raise money.

He said: “A friend of mine’s boy spends a lot of time in there. He’s got leukaemia – I’m not just running for Harry, it’s for all the other sick kids.

“You don’t think about it until you go to the hospitals and see the children, some of whom are seriously ill.

“We feel fortunate, there are plenty of people worse off than us. You have to do as much as you can for them, even if all you can do for them is raise money for toys and game and it makes them happy.

“Whatever we raise will be better than sitting at home doing nothing.”

Oxford Children’s Hospital spokeswoman Sarah Vaccari said: “We are delighted that Harry’s surgery went well this week – at just ten weeks old he has already had to cope with so much. For his dad, Matthew, to decide to run in the midst of all this is truly inspirational, and we are very grateful for the support.”

She added: “We now have close to 400 people signed up for the run, and with eight weeks to go there’s still plenty of time to get yourself out there and training for the five-miler.”

The event is sponsored by city recruitment firm Allen Associates for the seventh year running.

Our top stories

  • Do you want alerts delivered straight to your phone via our WhatsApp service? Text NEWS or SPORT or NEWS AND SPORT, depending on which services you want, and your full name to 07767 417704. Save our number into your phone’s contacts as Oxford Mail WhatsApp and ensure you have WhatsApp installed.