A CHARITY car wash helped to raise hundreds of pounds to help buy a wheelchair so young leukaemia sufferer Charlie Allen can keep mobile.

The five-year-old from Stratton was diagnosed with white blood cell cancer on June 4, which means he will go through courses of painful chemotherapy treatment for the next three-and-a-half years.

His friends and family have launched an appeal to help his mum Kelly Brown pay for a wheelchair and a car seat, and on Saturday the first of a series of fundraisers was held at Swindon Fire Station.

Firefighter Dusty Close helped to organise the day. He said: “We managed to raise £960 on the day. With extra donations coming in specifically for Charlie, £760 will be going towards The Charlie Allen Fundraiser and the remaining £200 will be going to the Firefighters Charity.

“Charlie Allen is in my daughter Grace’s class at Beechcroft Infant School and when they asked if there was anything we could do to help raise the money I said I could do something.

“Charlie even popped along himself for a bit. He was very, very poorly though, so couldn’t stay long.

“Leukaemia is a horrible disease for anyone to go through, let alone a little boy.”

Charlie’s nan, Karen Cole, was also pleased with the turnout for the event.

She said: “It’s been amazing, so many people have been so generous. Some people have just put donations in the bucket and didn’t even come in for a car wash. We never expected to have so many people come along.”

Charlie has started his second course of chemotherapy after his body did not respond to the first round and he developed two blood clots on the brain.

Future fundraisers for Charlie include a sponsored walk and Teddy Bear Picnic at Lydiard Park on August 30 organised by Beechcroft parents, which will be followed the next day by a fun day at the Wheatsheaf in Stratton.

Donations can be made in collection boxes at the Moonrakers, Wheatsheaf and Bakers Arms, or via facebook.com/ groups/1453773814877636/