A GRATEFUL mother has raised £6,660 from a sponsored gruelling row across the Irish Sea to say thank yoy to medics who saved her baby son’s life.

Ruth Calder-Potts, 39, below, who lives near Bere Alston, raised the money for Plymouth Hospitals Trust and Derriford Hospital where William, now aged two, underwent lifesaving treatment in the paediatric high dependency unit aged eight weeks old for sepsis.

She said: “It was quite simply brilliant! Tough but brilliant. It was an incredible four days with amazingly strong and kind people. How a bunch of strangers can come together and show such camaraderie, kindness, support, and good humour, to complete such a challenge is something quite special.”

Ruth was in a boat with a team of rowers taking part for their own reasons. They saw dolphins and seals and rowed in three-hour shifts with breaks to use the the tiny cabin to sleep (if possible), cook, eat and to use the toilet bucket.

Ruth said: “In the first two shifts I had moments where i thought this is utterly bonkers and what have i got my self into. But embracing the adventure and the challenges that came with it was my headspace and I quickly became used to three-hour chunks.

“Night times made me feel alive with big seas, rolling waves in the middle of the Irish Sea and strong currents pushing us south.

Ruth Calder-potts Irish sea row
Ruth Calder-Potts by her team's rowing boat (Hylton Calder-Potts)

“Also, moonlight, starlight, and sleep deprivation, yet wide-eyed, and feeling totally insignificant and small in Mother Natures World. Nothing mattered except pushing past my limits.” She is dreaming up a new adventure and thanked friend and fellow rower Arabella Lloyd, husband Hylton and donors.