Lyn Dean has decided to support the Bath Royal United Hospital's appeal for a bigger Neo-natal Intensive Care Unit after they helped her cope with the traumatic birth of her first child.

Miss Dean, of Chivers Road, Devizes, gave birth to her daughter Shannon nearly two months early after her blood pressure rocketed, causing the potentially fatal condition pre-eclampsia.

The Forever Friends Appeal is campaigning to raise the £4.5 million which is desperately needed to build a bigger, better neo-natal ward to care for premature and seriously ill babies.

Miss Dean, a relief worker for Canon's House, and her partner Tom Hyatt, a driver for Build Base, have arranged a sponsored skittles evening in Pewsey in October to raise money for the appeal.

Shannon, now two and a half, was delivered at just 3lb 7oz by emergency caesarean, after doctors feared for the lives of both mother and baby.

Miss Dean, 27, said: "I did not realise how serious it could be, I just hoped that everything was going to be all right.

"I didn't actually see her for three days because I was so ill. The nurses were so good they were bringing me photos of her. They were all so brilliant."

Shannon was on her way to recovery when she contracted MRSA in her right knee at just two weeks old.

Miss Dean said: "I just thought what else could possibly go wrong? I was also told I had a blood clot in my leg and I just thought 'this can't be happening'.

"They didn't know if they could clear up the MRSA, which could have led to death. The doctor wrote us a lovely letter explaining that MRSA wasn't as bad as you see on the news."

Although the unit is desperately short of space, Shannon was moved from the room she shared with six other babies into a room on her own because she may have been contagious.

Miss Dean said: "They did not know how she caught it. It could have been because she was so wired up and so many needles in and out but the staff were constantly washing their hands.

"Her right knee started to swell up and her temperature went up."

Miss Dean says that her first childbirth experience was so traumatic that she does not want to have any more.

She said: "Childbirth is supposed to be a wonderful thing but it was just a nightmare. She came through it but they weren't sure whether it would lead to further problems."

Luckily Shannon made a full recovery with no lasting side effects from the hospital super bug and is now a bubbly toddler.

Miss Dean said: "We just want to be able to give something back, but it's not half as much as they gave us, a healthy child.

"It would be great if they could make the facilities bigger. They do such a wonderful job."

The skittles is on October 21 at the Pewsey Scout Hall.