Ride to recovery for Trowbridge boy
4:00pm Sunday 10th March 2013 in Latest News
A LITTLE boy who has an undiagnosed condition which stunts his development has received a £1,600 bike which will build his muscles with the aim of allowing him to walk unaided.
The specialist Tomcat trike has allowed three-year-old Lewis Blake to go out cycling with his seven-year-old sister Izzy.
When Lewis was around three-months-old, his parents Teresa and Matthew Blake, of Azalea Drive, Trowbridge, noticed that he wasn’t developing at a normal rate.
Since then he has had a number of medical tests to see what is causing his problems, with no condition being found.
Mrs Blake, 36, said: “Lewis is a mystery to the doctors, his condition is so rare, but he’s such a happy little boy and his cheeky personality outweighs any of the issues he faces.”
Lewis’ new trike builds up his leg muscles which might one day allow him to walk for the first time and it is adjustable, so he should be able to use it for around four years.
It was funded by the Ron Bryant Trust which has spent around £200,000 buying equipment to aid young people with disabilities and illness, since forming around 15 years ago.
Mr Bryant, who was a director of Ernest Ireland Construction before it became part of the Mowlem Group, died of a brain tumour in 1993, with friends setting up the trust in his memory.
Former colleague and trustee Alan Waterson said: “I get great satisfaction out of helping young children and I know Ron would have been very proud of the work that has been done in his name.”
The Blakes were first put in touch with the trust through staff at the Royal United Hospital Bath, where Lewis goes for treatment, as well as at the Bristol Royal Hospital for Children.
Mrs Blake, who works as communications co-ordinator for Stepping Stones pre-school, said: “There’s no way we could have afforded the bike, it will allow us to easily go out as a family and we are so thankful to the trust.
“I feel really lucky to live in Wiltshire and have the support we get.”
In September, Lewis plans to start at Larkrise Primary School, which supports children with special needs, and he receives regular visits from West Wiltshire Portage, a home help programme.
His family also use Maka-ton sign language to help communicate with him as his speech isn’t at the level it should be for a three-year-old.
Izzy, a pupil at Walwayne Court, said: “My brother is so cute and I really like playing ball with him.”
On Sunday, Lewis’ half-sister Tash Blake, 21, ran the Bath Half Marathon inspired by him to raise money for Stepping Stones.
The Ron Bryant Trust holds a series of fundraisers to allow it to buy children the equipment they need and they would like to hear from anyone who would be keen to help organise a charity event.
For more information, email alan_waterson@ btinternet.com.