NOW a very healthy 32-year-old, it would be hard to guess Chris Jones was admitted to a specialist unit after being born eight weeks prematurely.

But his dad Dennis said he has never forgotten the outstanding care his then tiny son was given and has now helped to raise £3107 to help other families whose babies are looked after in a Special Care Baby Unit.

Mr Jones, 64, chose the York Hospital unit as his charity as captain of Easingwold Golf Club and with the support of fellow golfers has helped raise money to pay for a vapotherm system for York Hospital which gently helps premature babies to breathe when they come off a ventilator.

The equipment is currently only available in Hull and Leeds, meaning families of babies born in York have to travel miles to be with their baby if they are having breathing problems.

Mr Jones, of Haxby, said: "My wife Rachel and I have had the benefits of such a unit. If it had not been there Chris would not have survived. This will mean babies can come back from Leeds and Hull if they need breathing assistance."

Born eight weeks early, Chris weighed 4lbs 1oz, and was then cared for in the special care baby unit in Hull as his parents travelled daily from Beverley.

Mr Jones said that while they initially had fears about his health, Chris - who worked as a project manager on the London Olympics and is currently working on the Commonwealth Games - is healthy and well due to the excellent care he received.

The club raised the money through a Captain's Day, raffles, donations and a forfeit of paying a penalty if golfers landed in the Captain's bunker.