Walk in memoryof Florence Rose

FAMILY and friends of a baby from Hanham who died at three days old are raising money to help others affected by similar tragedies.

Ryan and Ella Palmer’s daughter Florence Rose was born in September 2019 at the Royal United Hospital in Bath and lost her life at Bristol Children’s Hospital.

While awaiting the results of tests to find the cause of her death, Ryan regularly spent time with their daughter in hospital, cuddling her, singing her nursery rhymes and watching films with her. 

This gave the couple a vision: to create a home-like environment at the RUH where bereaved parents can have precious time with their child before the funeral. They are working with hospital officials to develop the Florence Rose Room, a pod-like building with a garden situated on the outskirts of the hospital site.

Four years on, after some delays because of the pandemic, the couple are more than three quarters of the way towards their £20,000 target. The pod is in place and now needs equipping, while the garden has to be landscaped. There are also plans for a metal memorial tree.

Tracey Martin, a retired midwife at the RUH and a friend of Ella’s grandma Cath, is planning an ambitious sponsored walk this month to boost the funds. She will be accompanied by, Rachel Coleman, a midwife in Trowbridge.

The pair plan to walk 55 miles over two days, September 9 and 10, starting and finishing at the RUH and calling in at birthing centres at Chippenham, Trowbridge, Frome and Paulton. 

“We are calling it 55 for Florence,” said Tracey. “We will be joined for a few miles at the start and finish by Florence’s family and midwives who cared for Florence following her birth.”