Fleet of bangers in memory of Toby

A FLEET of charity banger racing cars is in the pipeline today in memory of a ten-year-old boy.Toby Button was blind for most of his short life but he loved listening to old cars whiz around on the tracks.

A FLEET of charity banger racing cars is in the pipeline today in memory of a ten-year-old boy.

Toby Button was blind for most of his short life but he loved listening to old cars whiz around on the tracks.

So to raise money for the East Anglia's Children's Hospices (EACH) where Toby was cared for until he died in January 2005 his dad, Carl, painted a banger in the hospices' colours to race at Foxhall Stadium.

Mr Button, 32, of Cedarcroft Road, Ipswich, said: “We painted the car in purple and orange and painted on the hospice sign.

“It was nice because I know that Toby was a part of building it, he was with us the whole time.

“My step sons and daughters also helped build it so it was a family affair.

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“I had taken Toby banger racing a couple of times and he loved it so this was important.”

Mr Button said he hoped the race would raise awareness of the work of EACH which had provided great support to Toby while he battled against the debilitating condition, Batten disease, which causes a progressive deterioration of the brain and nervous system.

And because it was so successful at spreading the message the fleet of EACH bangers is now being planned.

Mr Button added: “We had a great day. We'd only decided to do it a week beforehand so unfortunately it didn't last on the track that long before it broke.

“But now we're hoping to build a team of EACH bangers.”

And it wasn't just the purple and orange car that helped EACH at the race, the event collected £430 for the charity.

Simon Hempsall, EACH's marketing and communications manager, said: "Fundraising events like the banger racing at Foxhall Stadium are terrific not only for the money raised but the awareness it brings to the general public.

“Special mention must go to Carl Button and his family who continue to be fantastic supporters to our fundraising challenges.

“They truly are wonderful ambassadors to get our message across.

“Some children may only have a very short time to live, perhaps only weeks or months, others may reach young adulthood but our is always the same - to enhance their quality of life and support their family.”

Would you like to praise EACH? Are you raising money for a good cause? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk.

Batten disease

The group of diseases known as Batten disease - or the neuronal ceroid lipofuscinoses (NCL) - are progressive, degenerative, genetic metabolic diseases that occur in children and adults.

The condition is named after the British paediatrician who first described it in 1903.

Batten disease is relatively rare, occurring in around one in 30,000 births.

The illness leads to a progressive deterioration of the brain and nervous system.

SOURCE: Batten Disease Family Association

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