The mother of a baby born with a serious brain condition will be pounding the streets of Accrington this weekend in a bid to help other sufferers.

Dawn Smith, from Oswaldtwistle, had not heard about hydrocephalus, or 'water on the brain', until she had her ninth child, Harrison.

Doctors diagnosed little Harrison with the condition three weeks after he was born and fitted him with a metal 'shunt' which drains cerebro-spinal fluid into the bloodstream.

Dawn, from Blossom Avenue, does not know how the condition will affect the 18-month-old.

But in an attempt to raise awareness of the Association for Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus, she will lead a pub crawl this weekend in aid of the cause.

She said: "We didn't know anything was wrong until he was three weeks old and his head started to swell and he had a shunt fitted to draw the fluid away from his brain.

"They told us it can affect his balance and he is a little clumsy, but he was walking at 11 months.

"We are going to go from pub to pub and try to raise the profile of the charity.

"He may get away with never having to have an operation, but on the other hand he could need three a year. We don't know what damage that could cause."

Dawn, 43, lives with husband Shaun, 40, and children Marc, 22, Oliver, 20, Kimberley, 19, Joshua, 14, Leo, 10, Athena, seven, Sophie, five, and Mollie, three.

The family organised a charity walk last year along the Leeds-Liverpool Canal, raising more than £4,000 for the cause.

And in August they will hold a charity auction at The Crown Ground.

Dawn will lead the ladies' pub crawl this Saturday, February 27, from Grants Bar on Manchester Road from 7.30pm.

They will don pink 'ASBAH' T-shirts and collect donations from pubs and clubs in the town.

Dawn said: "Of course we hope to raise money on the night to support ASBAH's great work but we also hope to raise the charity's profile and let people know there is someone they can turn to for support and information."

For more information on the Association for Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus log onto or call the helpline on: 0845 450 7755.