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Holiday Hydrotherapy Helps Bolton’s Abigail

Hydro GroupAbigail Lightbown from Bolton, who is undergoing treatment for a Brain Tumour at Royal Manchester Children's Hospital, was joined by Pete Constanti, Chairman of Thomas Cook Children's Charity, Coronation Street star Antony Cotton and children's hospital patron Julie Neville to officially open the hydrotherapy unit at Royal Manchester Children's Hospital on Friday 4th May.


Thomas Cook Children's Charity kindly donated £150,000 to Royal Manchester Children's Hospital Charity to help make a difference to patients, like Abigail, by making the hydrotherapy unit at the hospital more child friendly and welcoming.


Now, when patients 'check in' at reception, they will be able to map and plan travels to far away lands in the holiday inspired artwork and listen to sounds of the ocean, helping to create a sense of adventure for children and a less daunting and clinical environment.


As well as holiday themed artwork in receptions and corridors, the pool area has also undergone a transformation in to an 'under the sea' paradise to help children to relax whilst receiving treatment.   Staff treating children in the pool area will now be able to use sound art such as the ambient noise of waves and water and coloured lighting, to help create a calm atmosphere and help a child to feel more comfortable as well provide encouragement and stimulation throughout their treatment. 


Captivating artwork has also been added to treatment rooms with children being able to touch the jewels and coins in the treasure chest and see 'magic' in lentricular pictures throughout the unit. 


Pete Constanti, Chairman of Thomas Cook Children's Charity commented: "We are proud to have supported this project and are confident that the new décor will make a difference and will be a welcome distraction for the children as they undergo treatment and therapy at Royal Manchester Children's Hospital."


11-year-old Abigail has been using the hydrotherapy unit as part of her treatment, as after undergoing surgery to remove the tumour she required physiotherapy and rehabilitation, both in the hydrotherapy pool and the treatment rooms and will now benefit from the brighter and more child-friendly areas.


Abigail said: "I think it is brilliant and having bright colours and magic pictures makes it much better.  I can't wait for my next hydrotherapy session so I can test the new light and sound art out for myself."




For further information please contact:

Julie-Anne Weaver

PR officer

0161 276 6726   

0782 788 6286




Notes to Editors


About the charity


  • The Charity provides resources to make a difficult time a little bit easier for children and their families who use Royal Manchester Children's Hospital. 


  • Royal Manchester Children's Hospital opened in central Manchester in June 2009.  The hospital is one of five located close together along Oxford Road, ensuring access to specialist support and better treatment for all of our patients. Royal Manchester Children's Hospital treats over 185,000 patients every year.  They come from all over the North West of England and from other parts of the country for some very specialised treatments.  


  • Royal Manchester Children's Hospital Charity is part of the Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust Charity.  Registered charity number 1049274. 


  • The other hospitals which make up Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust Charity are:


Manchester University Dental Hospital Charity

Manchester Royal Eye Hospital Charity

Manchester Royal Infirmary Charity

Saint Mary's Hospital Charity