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Page last updated at 11:54 GMT, Tuesday, 7 September 2010 12:54 UK
New trike helps Ben Baddeley walk for the first time

Ben is learning to take steps all by himself

The parents of a six-year-old with a type of cerebal palsy say they still can't believe he's walking unaided.

Amy and Gary Baddeley from Silverdale in Newcastle-under-Lyme were told their oldest son Ben would always need a wheelchair.

Now though, thanks to the help of a special tricycle, his muscles have become so strong he's spent the whole summer walking without his sticks.

Locals at the Bush Pub in Silverdale raised the money to pay for the trike.

Ben Baddeley has spastic diplegia cerebral palsy. It means he can't, or shouldn't be able to walk unaided.

When he was aged one, his parents Amy and Gary were told that he would have to use a wheelchair for the rest of his life.

Special trike

When he started school, the teachers were worried that he wouldn't be able to play outside with the other children.

A physiotherapist suggested that Ben could try a special trike.

"He got on this bike and he was just riding it around for ages," said Amy.

"It's the first time he's ever been able to be free on his own and move."

The tricycle was very expensive and beyond their means, but the local community raised the £700 needed to pay for it.

The Baddeley family
Ben's parents were told he'd be in a wheelchair all his life

Muscle building

When he started using it, his parents noticed that he was getting muscles in his legs.

Then one day, Amy was on her own making tea when Ben walked in. She was shocked.

For the Baddeley family from north Staffordshire, it's something they didn't think they'd ever see their oldest child do.

Ben now enjoys walking around and chasing his friends and he's not used his sticks all summer.

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