The Press and Journal (Inverness, Highlands, and Islands)

Chil­dren’s plea to sports stars

● Pa­tients hope can­di­dates for BBC awards can find time to pay them a visit

- BY DANIEL BOAL Family · Parenting · Aberdeenshire · United Kingdom · Scotland · Lewis Hamilton · J-Live

Pa­tients at a hos­pi­tal in Aberdeen have been writ­ing let­ters to some of the UK’s big­gest sports stars ask­ing them to visit them at the Royal Aberdeen Chil­dren’s Hos­pi­tal ahead of the BBC Sports Per­son­al­ity of the Year awards.

More than a dozen chil­dren sent let­ters to their favourite stars, hop­ing for an early Christ­mas present when they are in Aberdeen for the awards cer­e­mony at P&J Live on De­cem­ber 15.

One 15-year-old pa­tient said that a visit from peo­ple the chil­dren “ad­mire and idolise” would brighten their day.

An­other let­ter, signed by Grady, said: “I feel your visit could mean a lot and could put a smile on some of the chil­dren’s faces.

“I would hope that you would be able to tell them sto­ries of your sport­ing achieve­ments.”

Amy, who was in Royal Aberdeen Chil­dren’s Hos­pi­tal for a check-up, took the time to write a let­ter ask­ing sports stars to con­sider vis­it­ing the chil­dren who haven’t been able to go home yet.

She said: “As I sit here writ­ing and wait­ing to be seen by my on­col­ogy doc­tor for my yearly checkup, I can hear chil­dren scream­ing as they get their bloods done.

“It makes me re­mem­ber how I felt when I was in the same po­si­tion – out of con­trol.

“The re­al­ity for me was that I spent most of my time in the hos­pi­tal, not hav­ing fun like most chil­dren are.

“I might be bet­ter now, but there are still chil­dren whose re­al­ity is just as I de­scribed.

“I know that it would have meant the world to me to see some of my favourite sports he­roes and even though this is not my re­al­ity now, I write to you to ask you to come and put a smile on their faces and give them a mem­ory from hos­pi­tal that’s not all about the med­i­cal things.”

The hos­pi­tal has re­cently been the fo­cus of a BBC Scot­land se­ries, with a sec­ond se­ries hav­ing been con­firmed for next year.

Play ser­vice man­ager at the hos­pi­tal, Heather Beat­tie, said: “One of the chil­dren had the idea to in­vite some of the sports per­son­al­ity award at­ten­dees, and the idea has grown from there.

“Some of the let­ters are ad­dressed to in­di­vid­ual sports stars while oth­ers are ad­dressed gen­er­ally to at­ten­dees.

“Most of the chil­dren have said they’d love it if Andy Mur­ray or Lewis Hamilton could make time to come and see them.

“Oth­ers would love to see ath­letes, in­clud­ing Kata­rina John­son-Thompson, and some of our gym­nasts.

“We’ll just have to hope they see the let­ters and have time to come and say ‘hello’ – we’ve our fin­gers crossed.”

One let­ter, ad­dressed to the re­cently-crowned F1 world cham­pion Lewis Hamilton, from a 10-yearold cys­tic fi­bro­sis pa­tient, said: “I think the chil­dren that have to stay in hos­pi­tal would love you and oth­ers sports­peo­ple to come and visit them while you are up in Aberdeen.”

 ??  ?? Six-time F1 world cham­pion Lewis Hamilton
Six-time F1 world cham­pion Lewis Hamilton
 ??  ?? Wim­ble­don and Olympic cham­pion Sir Andy Mur­ray
Wim­ble­don and Olympic cham­pion Sir Andy Mur­ray
 ??  ?? LET­TERS: Hep­tath­lete Kata­rina John­son-Thompson
LET­TERS: Hep­tath­lete Kata­rina John­son-Thompson
 ??  ?? Let­ter from Imo­gen to cham­pion driver Lewis Hamilton
Let­ter from Imo­gen to cham­pion driver Lewis Hamilton

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