YOUNGSTERS being treated in Southampton can look forward to more fun and games than ever in hospital this week.

Play specialists at Southampton General Hospital have planned a fun-filled programme of events for young patients to celebrate 50 years of National Play in Hospital Week.

Patients at Southampton Children’s Hospital and on-site rehabilitation centre Bursledon House will be able to get their faces painted, meet Star Wars soldiers the Stormtroopers and take part in “messy” play using paints and play dough.

They will also have the chance to try out two new state-of-the-art Beamz music systems, which allow users to play 12 different instruments with their hands or fingers by interrupting four laser beams, and participate in a colouring competition run by the charity Starlight.

The play team will also give an insight into the preparation and distraction techniques used to soften the hospital experience, including the debilitating fears clinic.

The clinic, for young patients with an overwhelming fear of certain medical procedures, sees the play specialists work with the child psychology department to help children express their concerns to staff.