12 Days of Christmas winner: Heroic Layton Holmes

He's a little sparkler: Bex and Nicola Kilner from the charity with three-year-old Layton Holmes and his mum Natalie.'                                                                                      Picture: Glenn Ashley.
He's a little sparkler: Bex and Nicola Kilner from the charity with three-year-old Layton Holmes and his mum Natalie.' Picture: Glenn Ashley.
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A LITTLE boy who is defying doctors’ expectations after his parents were told he’d never walk or talk has an extra reason to celebrate - after being given the chance to go on an exciting day out thanks to The Star and a city charity.

Layton Holmes, aged three, of St Aiden’s Rise, Norfolk Park, suffers from cerebral palsy and is registered blind, but has recently managed to take his first steps.

He is making steady progress with the help of regular sessions at the Royal Society for the Blind on Mappin Street, Sheffield.

Layton and all his friends are now set to go on a trip worth £500 to Sundown Adventureland, near Retford, Nottinghamshire, courtesy of Sheffield charity Help a Child Have a Chance, which has teamed up with The Star for The 12 Days of Christmas appeal.

The campaign offers needy youngsters across the region the chance of receiving a share of £10,000.

Nominations flooded in after an appeal last month. Over the next two weeks, the recipients of the charity cash will be revealed.

Layton’s mum and full-time carer Natalie Lorryman, aged 24, said she and her former partner Craig Holmes, 30, discovered their son’s disabilities in the months after his birth.

He has cerebral palsy in his left side, cannot see more than about four metres and has hydrocephalus, or water on the brain.

“We were upset when we first found out about them, we were really worried.

“But he’s made excellent progress. They said he wouldn’t walk and would be bed-bound.

“Now he shuffles round and they’re teaching him to crawl now at school,” said Natalie

Layton, who is a pupil at Norfolk Park Special School, recently underwent a surgical procedure called a VP shunt, used to relieve pressure on the brain.

He attends a club called Little Sparklers every Wednesday at Mappin Street.

“They play with toys that have lights and sounds and things that get them to use their eyes a lot more,” said Natalie.

She also has a daughter Ellie, aged five.

“He really enjoys going, he’s been going since he was a baby.”

Layton was nominated to receive a share of the charity money by Joanne Ardern, from the Royal Society for the Blind.

“He’s astounded everyone, has recently managed a couple of steps and is now able to sign his first few words,” she said.

“Despite all his problems and hospital visits he remains so cheerful and seems to have a permanent beaming smile.”

Layton will enjoy activities such as go-karting, a boat ride and a wild-west themed p lay area at the theme park, which is designed for under-10s.

“It’s excellent, he’ll absolutely love it,” Natalie said.

* Layton’s dad Craig is in hospital with serious head injuries after falling downstairs.

He is having to learn how to walk and talk again and his family have been told it could be more than a year before he is able to return home fully.