A BOY from Whitchurch has made his parents proud by raising over £1,000 for a charity close to their hearts.

Ben Crosby, aged seven, took part in the Ultimate UK Kids Fun Triathlon on Saturday, June 1 to raise money for Claire House, a Wirral-based charity dedicated to support children with terminal illnesses.

Claire House is especially poignant for the Crosby family, as mum Vicky attended primary school with Claire Cain, who died aged nine in 1989 after suffering from a sudden illness.

The Cain family set up Claire House shortly afterwards and as Claire would have turned 40 this year, her former classmates have held a number of fundraisers.

"Claire died when we were in primary school and at the time there were no children's facilities to care for her," said Vicky.

"Her friends and family have spent 20 years building up the hospice and as we all turned 40 this year we decided to do individual fundraisers."

Vicky could not take part this year owing to a hospital visit, so Ben stepped in and offered to take up the challenge of raising money.

After looking for an event to take part in, Ben spotted the Ultimate UK Kids Triathlon at Alderford Lake, taking part alongside the adult's event and elected to take part, despite being an newcomer to triathlon events.

He said: "I've been in hospital with hip surgery, so my little boy said that he'd do the fundraiser. We took him to Alderford to practice a few days before.

"He's never swam in open water before and there were lots of adults there, but he was amazing.

"He understood why Claire House was built, but after seeing a programme on TV it really helped him understand."

Thanks to his efforts, Ben has raised more than £1,000, despite initially aiming for £100.

"If we managed to raise £100 we would be happy, but we've raised quite a bit more than that," said Vicky. "I'm very proud of him.

"Ben did say he'd like to have another go. He was buzzing at the end of it. He's a bit of a shy lad, doesn't naturally say 'look at me' but he is an amazing little man and we are all very very proud of him."

To donate to the fundraiser visit justgiving.com/fundraising/vickyandbencrosby

On June 30 the classmates have organised a 13.5 mile run from Claire House Hospice, Clatterbridge to Claire's Tree in Vale Park, New Brighton.

Visit eventbrite.co.uk/e/claires-40-for-40-run-and-fun-day-tickets-58439243350 for details.