A LITTLE boy at the centre of a fundraising campaign to get him walking unaided could be taking his first steps next year now that his family have secured an appointment with a top surgeon.

Hundreds of people have stepped in to raise the £23,000 needed to pay for the Selective Dorsal Rhizotomy operation which could change three-year-old Jack Pike’s life.

Jack suffers from diplegia cerebral palsy, which means the muscles in his legs do not work properly.

However, the operation at Frenchay Hospital could change that.

The family, who were expecting to have to wait to see the neurosurgeon at least until Jack turns four in January, will be travelling to Bristol on October 8 to see whether he can have the surgery there.

His mother Kylie, of Penhill , said: “We had a letter on Thursday saying we will see the actual surgeon who will carry out the operation. “It gave me goosebumps. I am so happy because we are closer to actually having the operation.”

The surgery will target nerves in Jack’s spine which could allow his muscles to move normally.

The family have raised £28,500 so far but will need to raise more to pay for aftercare and physiotherapy, as well as the operation.

They have decided to pay for the operation themselves rather than wait to see whether the NHS will pay for it.

Kylie said: “We are not relying on the NHS anymore. We decided not to after we had the meeting with the MPs.

“If the operation was going to be done when he was six that is three years away, they might have changed their mind by then.

“Because we have been told he could have the operation when he is four we want to pay for it so he can have it as soon as possible. I don’t think the NHS would change their mind in six months.

“Sometimes I dream that he is walking and running around. “We went on holiday this summer and people were staring at Jack in his walker. This operation will change his life.”

As well as suffering with spastic diplegia cerebral palsy, Jack also suffers with epilepsy, an enlarged heart and has a feeding tube.

The family are fundraising to pay for the physiotherapy that Jack will need following the operation. Visit the Tiptoes2Footsteps page on Facebook.