Following their performance in Italy last year, local band Nightrain are playing at the Stag Plaza at the Stag Theatre, Sevenoaks on Friday May 09 to help raise monies and make the parent’s room a brighter place at the Evelina Children’s Hospital (Part of Guys & St Thomas) in London. Tickets are now on sale through the Stag theatre box office and there will also be a raffle taking place on the evening which is being supported by local businesses.

The fundraising project was inspired by vocalist Sarah Jane’s third baby, Austin, who was born in November 2013 and diagnosed with severe aortic stenosis just before Christmas. The condition is a narrowing of the aortic valve of the heart which can be life threatening. After subsequent tests, like many parents in Kent, they were referred to a heart specialist at the Evelina Children's hospital.

Marcel Mendez & Tim Lyth, Nightrain Founders commented, “We learnt that there was a parent’s area at the hospital that could be improved and we all felt strongly that we wanted to help raise money by putting together a night of live music which we hope will be both entertaining for the audience and lucrative for the Charity. We will be performing songs featuring classic rock and pop hits from the Rolling Stones to Lady Gaga”.

Sarah Jane adds “at the hospital, there are all kinds of facilities to enable children to deal with their debilitating illnesses; toys, games, a slide; a library and even schooling onsite. This is a stressful time for any parent. As you might expect there is plenty of distress on the wards, but the surgeons, nurses and other staff were always available with a smile and guidance. If you ever have the misfortune of being in hospital with a very sick child this is the place to be. The only thing we felt could be improved was a bright, clean and calm, quiet and private space for the parents. A place to shower or sit without being too far from your child. Our hope is to be able to raise sufficient money to help improve the parents’ room”.

“Austin was born on the 5th of November 2013. As parents of two boys already we had been through this process and other than seeming a bit short of breath and worn out when born he was soon squawking away like any baby; all seemed perfectly normal. We had been congratulating ourselves on our parenting skills, and the ease with which our baby seemed to sleep and how ‘chilled’ he seemed. But after about 3 weeks things started to look a little less clear. Austin had a ‘blue episode’ meaning he stopped breathing. This was a pretty scary moment for us. After a quick rush to A&E at the Pembury hospital he was given oxygen and kept in for monitoring. At this point we were told he had a “heart murmur” and following a further test he was diagnosed with Aortic Stenosis, a narrowing of the heart valve. We were told that this meant he simply didn't have the energy to keep awake for long periods of time because his heart had to work so hard to push all the blood around his body.

Austin was booked for keyhole surgery; a delicate procedure and a familiar one to the surgeons, but not without risk. The operation was a success and we were delighted to see our baby returned to us. From the moment he woke from surgery the difference in him was remarkable. He was full of energy and still smiling. We were very lucky to make it home on Christmas Eve with baby Austin and it was the best and only present my husband Ben and I could have wished for.”


Performance: Friday May 09, 7.30pm
Ticket Price: £10, £8c/FoS

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