Pre-school opens Amy’s House with navy cash

Commodore Mark Slawson cuts the ribbon at Amy's House at Magpies Pre-School in the Nimrod Community Centre in Rowner, Gosport.
Commodore Mark Slawson cuts the ribbon at Amy's House at Magpies Pre-School in the Nimrod Community Centre in Rowner, Gosport.
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DOZENS of youngsters rushed into a new play house named in memory of a popular Gosport mum.

Amy’s House at Magpies Pre-School at the Nimrod Community Centre in Rowner, Gosport, is named after Amy Dougan who died in 2011 aged 27 after suffering from leukaemia.

The sailors of HMS Sultan donated £1,000 to the pre-school, which Amy’s daughter Frankie, 10, now a Year 7 pupil at Boundary Oak, used to attend.

Hundreds turned out at Amy’s funeral in 2011.

And her legacy at Magpies is a happy one, with scores of children rushing into play inside the playhouse after Commodore Mark Slawson cut the ribbon.

Frankie watched as the youngsters piled into the house, and said it was nice the centre had named the house after her mother.

‘It’s good that they remember her,’ she said.

‘Magpies is a fun place to play and hang around with your friends.

‘My friend and I used to come here and we used to play with the water and sand.’

The centre also plans to install a memorial bench in its garden to remember Amy.

Julie McMonagle is the manager at the pre-school and knew Amy.

She said: ‘Her daughter came here as a pupil and she’s been a friend of mine since she was a little girl.

‘Sultan donated the money for the house for the children of Rowner. We thought it would be nice to name the house after Amy.’

And surrounded by children Cdre Slawson, who retires from the navy tomorrow after 35 years of service, said the cash had come from £30,000 raised at the Sultan Summer Show.

He said: ‘Most of it goes in small packages to local charities on the peninsula, particularly those that benefit children.

‘That’s just one of the links that HMS Sultan has.

‘We’ve got lots of links with the community, which I’ve tried to build on.