THE mission to help a six-year-old Slimbridge girl with quadriplegic cerebral palsy walk again is leading her dad on a marathon 15-mountain challenge in a bid to raise more than £8,000.

James, who is the former Dursley Round Table chairman, and Kate Bottger’s oldest daughter Charlotte has overcome an array of astounding obstacles even though she is still only six years old.

She was born 10 weeks premature with a heart condition and was diagnosed with quadriplegic cerebral palsy when she was just 18 months old.

With severe spasticity in all four limbs she was unable to walk, struggled to hold a pen and had problems with speech.

Her story is known by many in the area, as she quipped to the Gazette: “You probably know me from the TV!”

Now father-of-three James, who last Christmas organised Dursley Round Table’s Santa Sleigh Run, is taking on yet another heroic task, The Welsh 3000 to raise £8,250 for vital equipment which will help Charlotte in her arduous mission to learn to walk again.

“She is an inspiration to me and all who know her in the way she just takes all of the difficulties in her stride with the perseverance & determination of an Olympic athlete,” said James, who lives in Slimbridge with wife Kate and three daughters Charlotte, six, Hattie, three and six-month-old Matilda.

“On this challenge I have to remember that Charlotte would love to be able to do climbs to see the tops of the mountains and the amount of pain she endures during a normal month is on par with this challenge but I know that it'll be gone in 2-3 weeks.

“Charlotte can only help inspire the people around her with her can do attitude and perseverance.

“I'll be suffering from the start but just like before I'll dig deep and endure it for my family as an example of effort & perseverance to achieve your goals.”

Back in 2015 James, now 39, undertook another impressive feat, climbing the height of the Mount Everest by walking up Robinswood Hill in Gloucester 75 times and raising £21,000 in the process.

This brought the Slimbridge family to the £60,000 needed to take Charlotte to St Louis Children’s Hospital in Missouri, USA, for specialist surgery and physiotherapy to reduce the amount of pain she was in and help regain some of her motor functions.

In April Charlotte underwent major surgery to reposition both of her femurs – thigh bones – which due to her frequent muscle spasms were almost 60 per cent out of their sockets at the hip.

Following the surgery the inspirational six-year-old was left her in a torso to ankle cast for five long weeks – a cast she told the Gazette was like having ‘frog legs’.

When this was removed in June, Charlotte was left needing to learn how to stand and walk all over again in effectively a new body – but she is more than ready to take on yet another challenge, and all with a beaming smile.

The Bottger family are looking to raise £8,250 to purchase a specialist Litegait Trainer, harness and treadmill to support Charlotte as she learns to walk again.

This equipment will not only support Charlotte in the short term but it will enable her to continue to gain and maintain walking as she gets older and even into adulthood.

In order to raise the funds needed, Charlotte’s dad, James, 39, will be attempting the Welsh 3000 Challenge along with 10 others.

The epic task is to climb every peak in Wales over 3,000ft in 24 hours from this Saturday, starting at 4am, into Sunday - that’s 15 mountains, 30 miles and over 4,000m of climbing.

He and his team will start from Pen-y-Pas and navigate Tryfan, Crib Goch and Snowdon before finishing in Foel Fras – the hike also includes several perilous climbs so the team are hoping for good weather conditions.

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