The Star’s Cute Kids winners beam with pride

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A FUTURE ladies’ man, a new sister and a little miracle – these are the adorable tots that you judged to be South Yorkshire’s cutest.

Lucas Kassim, Lilly-May Taff-Bolton and Lauren Elizabeth Taylor scooped the top prizes in The Star’s Cute Kids competition after winning our readers’ vote.

Parents of all three beamed with pride after their youngsters beat hundreds of adorable photo entries to claim first place in each of their categories.

And there was double joy for the family of two-year-old Lilly-May, who won the 25-36 months age category, after her baby sister Heidi entered the world last week.

Mum Emma Taff, aged 22, gave birth at the Jessop Wing on Friday.

She said: “We didn’t know what Lilly-May was going to make of it, but they have been getting on well so far.

“It will be great for her to have a little playmate.”

Mum and mechanical engineer dad Bradley Bolton, 23, entered their eldest daughter in the Cute Kids competition after seeing it advertised in The Star.

Emma, of Jepson Road, Wincobank, said: “We just thought she was cute, so we thought others may as well – obviously we’re pleased we did now. I thought I was being wound up when they told me.”

Barnsley parents Katherine and Paul Taylor were also celebrating after daughter Lauren topped the vote in the 0-12 months category.

But they knew they had already won the best prize possible a year ago when little Lauren fought back against the odds to survive her premature birth.

Katherine, 35, said: “She was born four weeks early and was critically ill for three weeks in Barnsley Hospital’s neonatal unit.

“The first week after she was born it was obvious she was really ill. She had a collapsed lung and had to have chest X-rays. We did think that we might lose her. We pretty much lived in the hospital at that point.

“But she fought through against all the odds and we had her home in time for Christmas.”

Lauren is now fighting fit and back at the family’s Hoyland Common home with mum and dad Paul, 36.

“Being premature she is obviously small and a little bit behind what she would have been but she is getting there,” said Katherine. “She is a

joy.”

Gemma Hyatt, 23, and Michael Kassim, 24, were the third pair of proud parents after their son Lucas scooped the prize in the 13-24 months category.

And it is not the Southey toddler’s first taste of the limelight.

Lucas, aged 23 months, also claimed the top spot in a similar competition last year.

Gemma, of Palgreave Road, said: “He loves the attention – he’s going to be a right little ladies’ man.

“He’s lovely and very bubbly and loved by a lot of people. He’s one of a kind. I’m proud of him.”

The parents of all three cute kids win a gift voucher for Asda, a canvas print and a self-catering break at Pontins.