Eight men race from Anfield to Old Trafford on children’s scooters to raise funds for a disabled girl from Irlam

Eight men dressed as grannies are to travel from Anfield (Liverpool) to Old Trafford (Manchester) on June 26th dressed as grannies to raise funds for specialised physiotherapy for ten-year-old Freya Bailey from Irlam, Manchester.

Freya was born with two holes in her heart and has cerebral palsy and epilepsy. Her physiotherapy, which is not available on the NHS, costs around £1,000 per month.

Dad Darren, 49, came up with the Scooter Grannies idea in 2016 to help raise funds for an operation which helped ease Freya’s pain. He now has to continue to raise money for ongoing physio which helps to keep her mobile and means she can continue to ride her adapted bike and go swimming.

Darren said: ‘Originally I was thinking of some kind of event with us dressed as superheroes but my friend Olive, who is 80, said: ‘Everyone does that, why not dress as grannies? So I took myself to the charity shop, bought some outfits and Scooter Grannies was born.’

In previous years, Darren and his colleagues have scooted from Irlam to Blackpool, Irlam to Chester and Huddersfield to Irlam. Darren hopes to raise around £5,000 from 20 local businesses who sponsor the race to continue to pay for Freya’s physiotherapy.

‘Freya will need physiotherapy indefinitely so I have to continue to think of innovative ways to raise funds for her and keep people’s interest. Scooter grannies is great fun to take part in and gives the people who see us a laugh too, I hope.’

Darren and his supporters are also keen to raise funds for other local families with children with disabilities, so this year any money collected along the route will support Michelle Vincent and her son Kaiden, 16, who has Angelman Syndrome. Michelle set up a group for local carers @m44 and Darren is also a member.

Gill Gibb, CEO of Tree of Hope said: ‘We’re delighted to be helping with Freya’s fundraising and Scooter Grannies is certainly an innovative event! We wish Darren all the best with it.’

To donate to Freya’s fund, visit https://www.treeofhope.org.uk/freyaslittlelegs/

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