Brave Harriet’s inspiring story

One-year-old Harriet Hope Gleason from Nelson (s)
One-year-old Harriet Hope Gleason from Nelson (s)

The heartbreaking story of a Nelson baby’s battle with a brain condition is inspiring people to fund-raise.

One-year-old Harriet Hope Gleason was born with a large arachnoid cyst in her brain and developed hydrocephalus, fluid on the ventricles of the brain, shortly afterwards.

Since birth, Harriet has been admitted to ward 78 at the Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital on a number of occasions and has had five operations to try and correct the issue, most recently while she celebrated her first birthday.

She has had a double shunt system fitted to regulate the fluid which she will need for the rest of her life, and the problems have left her visually impaired.

Harriet’s mum Faye will be joined by Darren Harrety, his wife Kathryn and friend Maj Pajie on a sponsored walk from Nelson to Skipton and back on August 6th as a way of paying back the hospital for its work.

Faye, of Charles Street in Nelson, said: “We knew about the cyst at the 20 week scan stage and since then it has been back and forth to hospital.

“Harriet just gets on with it though. Other than her obvious health issues, she is a really good baby and is a happy child who is always smiling.

“The ward does great work and I always think when I leave just to be grateful because there is always somebody else or another family worse off than you are.”

Darren, whose wife is good friends with Faye, said: “It has been really sad to see Harriet going back to hospital all the time since she was born. And it has been hard for the family because Manchester is a long way, but it is the specialist place.

“By raising money towards funds for this ward we hope to improve their facilities or fund toys and things for the children in order to make their stay more comfortable.

“The walk is from Nelson to Skipton and back, all along the canal, and will be 40 miles. I’m quite fit because I do a bit of running, but walking is something different.”

Funds are already approaching the £500 mark and you can donate www.justgiving.com/fundraising/darren-Harrety