A new 3D machine which distracts small children while they undergo stressful and painful treatments has been gifted to Epsom Hospital.

The Gannett Foundation, the parent company of the Epsom Guardian, gave the hospital a £7,450 grant to buy the portable Sensory Pain Distraction Unit which shows colourful moving 3D images.

The machine has been described as an invaluable addition by nurses at nearby Kingston Hospital, who already have one.

Epsom paediatric ward manager Karen Kilday said the machine is a huge boost to the children who have to go through traumatic procedures.

She said: “I cannot begin to explain what this means to the children on the ward.

“We have many children admitted who have to go through some very necessary but nonetheless traumatic procedures and very often the thought of having a procedure is enough to frighten children.

“To be able to distract their thoughts onto something more pleasant can work wonders.

“To be able to offer this at Epsom when they come for their treatment is a huge boost and means that we can provide the continuity of care that has come to be expected when delivering key paediatric services.”

As well as awarding grants to Epsom Hospital, the Gannett Foundation currently supports dozens of families with children undergoing cancer treatment in the Epsom area.