Maldon District: Southminster family ‘overwhelmed’ by community’s generosity and £500 donation from Burnham chippy owner towards son’s medical treatment

By Ben Shahrabi

26th Feb 2023 | Local News

Harry's family needed help to raise money for his treatment. (Photos: Chelsea and Jolly Fryer)
Harry's family needed help to raise money for his treatment. (Photos: Chelsea and Jolly Fryer)

A Southminster family have expressed their heartfelt thanks to the owner of the Jolly Fryer chip shop, in Burnham-On-Crouch, who donated £500 towards their son's medical treatment.

14-month-old Harry was recently diagnosed with Severe Brachycephaly, a defect which means his head had grown in a misshapen way. While the condition will not harm his development, Harry's parents fear the impact the deformity could have on his confidence as he grows up.

The condition is treatable, but the equipment needed to do so is not available through the NHS. Harry needs a custom-fitted helmet to correct the defect, which costs £2,750.

Harry's mother, Chelsea, told Nub News: "We have been raising money for our son's private treatment for Severe Brachycephaly.

"Out of the blue, the Jolly Fryer donated the final £500 of our target so we can order Harry's helmet!

"We were also overwhelmed with support and contributions from Hillside Nursery in Southminster and the families there, along with our own friends and family."

"I can imagine the pain and stress Harry's parents are going through."

Vasili Elia, who owns the Jolly Fryer and several other local businesses, heard about the appeal as his son, Anthony, attends the same nursery as Harry.

He told Nub News: "I'm a father of three and I can imagine the pain and stress Harry's parents are going through.

"Harry really needed his helmet and I wanted to help him get [the fundraiser] over the line for him so the child can get on in life."

Vasili wanted to help Harry get his specialist helmet as he "actually melted" when he read about the child's condition.

Thanks to the generosity of Vasili and many other well-wishers in and around the Maldon District, Harry will get the specialist medical equipment he needs.

Vasili took over as owner of the Burnham chippy when previous owners, John Lord and Liz Silk, retired. In June last year, the couple had a 'whirlwind' week when The Jacksons visited their shop, just days before John and Liz appeared on 'A Place in the Sun'.

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