Bathgate dad completes Three Peaks Challenge for children in hospital

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A dedicated dad from Bathgate has completed the mammoth challenge of climbing the highest mountains in Scotland, England and Wales in one day, to raise money for children in hospital.

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John Scott climbed three of the highest mountains in the UK: Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike and Snowdon for a total climb of 3064 metres in under 24 hrs. He took on this difficult challenge, including the in order to raise two causes, close to his heart, including Edinburgh Children’s Hospital Charity (ECHC) and Sr John’s Children’s Fund.

His son Quinn was born six weeks premature and spent the first three weeks of his life in the Special Care Baby Unit (SCBU) at St John’s Hospital. In September last year, his 10-year-old brother Jake had an accident on his scooter and had to undergo life saving surgery at the Sick Kids.

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John summiting Scafell Pike during the nightJohn summiting Scafell Pike during the night
John summiting Scafell Pike during the night

John said “Having a premature baby is something that is hard to explain – so many newborn experiences are stolen from you and you enter a whole new world of worry, concern and medical interventions you never knew existed.

“The care the staff at St John’s gave Quinn and the support they gave to my wife and I was outstanding and helped to turn an initially scary experience into one of hope.

"Although Quinn was under 24 hour care, his ‘SCBU Aunties’ helped us to have special new parent experiences where possible, like changing his first nappy, giving him his first bath and dressing him for the first time. This was a massive boost and allowed us to still feel like parents.”

He added: ”When my little brother Jake had his accident in September, he was rushed to the Sick Kids where he had life-saving surgery as it was found that he had endured a subdural hematoma. He spent six weeks there altogether, where he also underwent physiotherapy to learn how to walk again.“The positivity and commitment from the staff not only had a massive impact on the outstanding recovery Jake made but they also supported my parents in a way I can’t explain.”

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John's son Quinn in the Special Care Baby UnitJohn's son Quinn in the Special Care Baby Unit
John's son Quinn in the Special Care Baby Unit

ECHC supports children, young people and families at the Royal Hospital for Children and Young People (RHCYP), as well as other children’s healthcare settings across the Lothians. St John’s Children’s Fund is held by ECHC and supports the children’s ward, maternity services and Special Care Baby Unit as well as other West Lothian children’s services.

Recovering from his ironman efforts, John said: “I genuinely loved every single minute of this challenge – the weather was outstanding during Ben Nevis. The views were incredible and I met some very inspirational people along the way.I have witnessed and experienced first hand how influential both these charities can be and how dependent people can become on this support. The difference they can make to people’s lives is something I just can’t put into words, so I am immensely proud to have single-handedly raised over £4000 for these charities and I feel honoured to have been able to help.”

Victoria Buchanan from ECHC praised John, adding: “He has raised a phenomenal amount and we would like to say an enormous thank you to him for taking on such a mammoth challenge. Climbing one mountain is tough enough, never mind three in under 24 hours.

“It is the generosity of amazing supporters like John that has enabled us to continue our vital work of ensuring children and young people have a positive hospital experience throughout the pandemic.”

John Scott with climbing companions Craig O’Connor, Michael Tait and Sean Heron at the summit of Ben NevisJohn Scott with climbing companions Craig O’Connor, Michael Tait and Sean Heron at the summit of Ben Nevis
John Scott with climbing companions Craig O’Connor, Michael Tait and Sean Heron at the summit of Ben Nevis

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