A doctor at the Royal United Hospital in Bath is travelling to the USA to raise money for the Forever Friends Appeal's Space to Grow campaign for a bigger neo-natal ward.

Dr Mark Tooley, a consultant clinical scientist, has won a place in the New York Marathon and he will be sponsored to support the appeal because he was a special care baby himself, 50 years ago.

Dr Tooley was born in Bath at just 28 weeks gestation when his parents were visiting family in the West Country. He said: "I was in an incubator for eight weeks with no physical contact with my mother and it was touch and go for a while.

"I was dependent on the staff and equipment in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit for my life and so the campaign to build a new premature baby unit at the RUH has made me want to give something back and say a big thank you"

The New York Marathon is taking place in November and Dr Tooley, who ran the Bath Half Marathon recently in one hour and 38 minutes, will be joined in the US by his wife and two children.

To sponsor Mark contact him on mark.tooley@ruh.nhs.uk or call Jo at the appeal office on (01225) 825823.