A couple are to continue raising vital charity funds in memory of their baby son after the birth of their new daughter.

Catherine Alport and Andrew Foster, from Wivenhoe, welcomed daughter Seraphina Rosemary Ava into the world on May 12.

The birth meant Andrew could not take part in the Leeds Marathon which he planned to run in honour of their late son Rycroft.

He now plans to run the race 'virtually' in the coming weeks, ensuring the fundraising efforts for Rycroft continue.

Rycroft had a rare genetic condition called Shwachman-Diamond syndrome (SDS), and needed a bone marrow transplant just after his first birthday.


Despite a successful procedure, Rycroft developed a chest infection during recovery and died last summer at the age of 16 months.

In his memory, Catherine and Andrew set out to raise £60,000 to thank the three charities which supported Rycroft during his brief life, including Colchester and Ipswich Hospitals Charity.

Having achieved this target by February, they decided to carry on fundraising.

Andrew said: "It was a consultant at Colchester that first discovered Rycroft's condition and it was at Colchester that he received such fantastic care that gave him a chance of life.

"For his little sister to be born at the hospital where he spent much of his life, and is continuing to impact upon so many people having being motivated to give so generously in his memory, feels like the closing of a circle."

Penny Norris, a community fundraising manager with Colchester and Ipswich Hospitals Charity said: "We were delighted to hear about Seraphina’s arrival, and would like to pass on our heartfelt congratulations to Andrew, Catherine and Seffy’s big sister Lyra.

"We are hugely grateful to the couple and their friends and family for their incredible fundraising so far, which has cemented Rycroft’s legacy and will make a huge difference to future patients at the hospital."

The couple have asked anyone who planned on buying them a card or present following their new arrival to donate the money to Colchester and Ipswich Hospitals Charity, Great Ormond Street Hospital or SDS UK.