A 5-year-old boy from Kingshill in Kent who had both legs amputated after suffering abuse from his parents as a baby, has become an ‘honorary race driver’ for all-disabled Team BRIT.
At just 41 days old, Tony sustained a range of serious injuries which led to him being on life support. In 2017 his legs were amputated and he continues to live with a dislocated hip and deafness in one year.
Having been inspired by the incredible achievements of Captain Tom in support of the NHS, Tony set himself the challenge to walk 10km throughout June, walking on his new prosthetic legs with crutches. He smashed his target and has now raised more than £1.6 million for the Eveline London Children’s Hospital that supported him for so long.
Team BRIT supports people with physical and psychological challenges in accessing motorsport and when seeing Bear’s story, team founder Dave Player got in touch with his adoptive parents to offer Bear a treat he will never forget.
On Friday 28th August he was invited to Team BRIT’s HQ in Dunsfold, Surrey where he was able to try out racing on the team’s specially adapted racing simulator. He was then presented with an electric car, fitted with hand controls and presented with his very own ‘race licence’ and certificate to mark his place as an honorary Team BRIT member.
Bear also had the chance to speak with team BRIT drivers who each live with disabilities, about how they have overcome challenge to pursue their dreams.
Bear’s adoptive mum Paula Hudgell said: “Meeting Team BRIT, gaining his ‘licence’ and receiving his amazing car has just been incredible for Tony.
“We want him to know that he can do whatever he wants to do, he might just have to do it slightly differently to other people. We always tell him he’s not disabled, he’s differently able and Team BRIT share that belief.
“Nothing seems to stop him and I hope meeting the team will inspire him even further.”
Paula is now fundraising to give Tony the best possible equipment, walking aids and therapy at home and school, and is aiming to raise £150,000 to continue with their home adaptations including the installation of a wet room and lift.
Team BRIT founder Dave Player said, “I was shocked, moved and amazed when I heard Bear’s story. We’re used to working with people who have suffered physical or psychological challenge, but it’s hard to compare anything to what this wonderful young boy has been through.
“To then put himself through what he has to raise funds for charity is simply amazing and we would love to help Paula raise more money for everything Bear needs.
“His day at our HQ was a small gesture, but our way of saying thank you to a young lad who will inspire us for years to come.”
You can donate to Tony’s fundraising at: