23rd November 2011
When You Wish Upon a Star are happy to have been able to grant Laoise’s wish to go to London with her family and see the sights.
With the help of the Hilton London Metropole the family enjoyed a 5 night stay and we managed to cram in as much as we could for all the family including a complementary meal, thanks to Bella Italia at 108 Queensway, a trip to the theatre, a visit to the zoo and ending with a day at the Lollibop Festival including VIP tickets to meet the characters of CBeebies.
Here's what Laoise's Mum had to say...
'We set off on Tuesday 1 August on the train from Stroud to London and Laoise had a ride in a taxi for the first time when we transferred to the hotel. Our room was on the sixth floor with 2 double beds plus a tv and tea and coffee making facilities. Laoise wanted to know where her kitchen was and how would we cook our food!! We also had to ban them from opening the mini bar! The Bella Italia restaurant was a quick taxi ride away and perfect for Laoise as she only eats pasta and cheese sauce! The manager had set up a table for us with loads of pink balloons and sparkly bits as well as activity books and crayons, all of which Laoise was very impressed with. He looked after us brilliantly all evening and sent us back to the hotel with two very happy children.
We used the Tube to make our way to the theatre to see the Lion King and as with most children, our kids loved the very big escalators in the tube stations. They both really enjoyed the musical - the props and sets were amazing and we had borrowed a hospital copy of the DVD to familiarise them with the story so that helped a lot. Laoise loved all the animals and seemed to be particularly moved by Simba's dad, Mufasa, dying and the characters being sad about it.
Thursday was a wet day so we had fun dodging the showers on the way to the London Eye. It dried off a bit for a boat trip on the Thames and was dry by the time we entered the Aquarium. It was fantastic having VIP tickets as we were able to go right to the front of a very long queue. Highlights for Laoise at the aquarium were seeing the octopus and the jelllyfish and we spent quite a long time at the sea horse display.
Friday was spent at the Zoo and again Laoise really enjoyed seeing lots of different animals. One of her favourites was watching a giraffe trying to get cabbage leaves out of a net at the top of a very high pole. We all enjoyed the "Meet the Animals" show where there were 2 macaws who both showed that they a good sense of humour.
On Saturday we had VIP tickets for the Lollibop, we saw a couple of Ceebeebies characters on stage - the Zingzillas and Rastamouse & his crew. There were circus activities to try like juggling and plate spinning and gems to search for. At 2.30pm our VIP tickets meant we were brought into a tent behind the scenes where a children's' entertainer kept the children busy, then Rastamouse and two of his crew arrived to say hello and give high fives before being led away for some much needed rest by the looks of things! The poor entertainer was swamped by eager children so he made a quick getaway and we returned to the festival.
It was a lovely week in London with lots of Laoise's favourite things to see and do. We are very grateful to When You Wish Upon a Star for helping us create a fabulous time for both Laoise and her big brother. We have since learned that Laoise has relapsed again and she is now receiving palliative care, rather than curative treatment. This means that our summer of activities and particularly our week in London will provide us with many happy and treasured memories.'