Cataracts doesn't happen in many children, and Eliza wasn't diagnosed until she was two, whereas with Charlie the hospital teams were able to detect it shortly after birth. We’ve signed up to the Oxford Mail OX5 RUN on Sunday 28th March, to say a huge thank you to the Oxford Children’s Hospital who have transformed Charlie and Eliza’s life.’

Lynne and Tom Hammond, from Woodstock, are no strangers to the Oxford Children’s Hospital after two of their children received life-changing surgery following diagnosis with children’s cataracts that limited their vision from an early age.

Both Eliza, now aged eight and Charlie, two, have had major eye operations at the Oxford Eye Hospital. Despite the challenges of being in hospital and juggling normal family life, Lynne couldn’t help but praise the ‘amazing’ hospital teams who looked after both children after the long and often complex operations.

Lynne tells us: ‘The care that we have received from the hospital for both Eliza and Charlie has been nothing short of amazing. We’re so lucky to have such an incredible hospital on our doorstep.

Over the years ‘Team Eliza and Charlie’ have taken part in 5 of our OX5 RUNS and raised over £15,000 for the Oxford Children’s Hospital Charity.

Each year support like this helps make our hospitals bright, comfortable, and engaging for our young patients and their families. It was during one particular stay that the family used one of the sensory rooms, funded by the charity, Lynne explains:

‘I remember when Eliza was in hospital for the first time, and a nurse who we got to know well during our stays asked whether we wanted to go and spend some time in the sensory room. As a family, we were amazed as it’s just one of those things that you don’t expect to have in a hospital. With each visit to the room, it just became a heaven for all of us, it was a calming and relaxing space that we could be together as a family and it’s things like this that the OX5 RUN funds.’

Joe Baker, from Oxford Hospitals Charity said:

‘It’s a real joy to catch up with the Hammond family and I am thrilled that they are joining us again for what’s shaping up to be a rather special virtual OX5 RUN.

It's always inspiring when we have families who come back year after year to thank the amazing medical teams and help us make a difference across children’s services in Oxfordshire.

Although this year is a little different, the idea remains the same and we are calling on local businesses, community groups and families who have used their local children's hospital, or simply care about this important cause, to get involved and make 2021 a year to remember.' 

The Oxford Mail OX5 RUN is now in its 19th year and is proudly sponsored by Oxford recruitment agency, Allen Associates. 

Entry this year for our virtual version costs just £10 per person aged 16 and above and £5 per child. Runners and walkers are asked to complete five miles close to their homes and following government guidelines when training and participating. 

If you feel inspired by the Hammond’s story and want to get involved, simply visit for more information or to sign up.