Coronavirus: Toddler dressed as Captain Tom raising cash for NHS with lengths of driveway

June 17, 2020

A toddler is raising money for the NHS by attempting to walk 100 lengths of his driveway by his first birthday.

Decked out in an assortment of fancy dress, Teddy Kilbane has raised more than £1,000 for NHS Charities Together since beginning the effort at his Portsmouth home.

Alongside outfits of builders and sailors, one was created for the infant in honour of Captain Sir Tom Moore, who his challenge was inspired by.

The former British Army officer raised £32m by walking 100 lengths of his garden before his 100th birthday. Teddy has another 59 lengths left to walk before he turns one on 17 July.

Both Teddy's parents have been involved in the national effort to counter coronavirus.

His mother Kiri is a GP, while his father Liam is a Royal Navy doctor and a trainee orthopaedic surgeon, but was seconded to Portsmouth's Queen Alexandra Hospital intensive care unit at the height of the COVID-19 crisis.

Mr Kilbane said: "This all started because he had a little trolley walker thing, we were trying to get him to just toddle around and he was doing quite well on it.

"I just kept turning it every time he hit a wall so he just kept going from kitchen to living room and I was thinking 'I wonder how far he can go'.

"We've got a shared driveway and it is a really nice flat surface so we went outside so see if he could do a length and he did it.

"I was very proud and I thought of Captain Tom's challenge and thought 'you're one in 57 days, so if you do less than two laps a day we could probably get to 100 lengths before your birthday."

Mr Kilbane said the family were trying to follow a different theme each day.

"That is becoming tougher as we need more ideas of what to put him in," he added.

"Some of them are distracting - we did a French one with garlic and onions and a french baguette and all he wanted to do was eat the bread which was quite funny."

Among those supporting the youngster have been Teddy's neighbours.

"It has been good fun, our neighbours all sort of poke their heads out as well which is quite nice," Mr Kilbane said.

"He tends to wave at the cars and wave at the windows even if there is no one there - he just gets distracted and wants to wave so you have to refocus him."

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Teddy's father said his son was currently doing between two and five lengths a day.

"Hopefully in another month he might be able to do a bit of it without the trolley," Mr Kilbane said

"He's pretty stable with the walker but he's a bit of a scaredy cat, even trying to make him walk holding one hand he just says no, he's still working on his confidence."

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