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Colchester boy who doctors said might never walk walking ten miles to raise funds

Four-year-old William Goodson from Nessing, Colchester was diagnosed with Angelman Syndrome at nine months old. He suffers frequent seizures, is non-verbal and cannot walk unaided. He has also contracted a life-limiting superbug which attacks his respiratory system. He frequently stops breathing and has endured more than 50 trips in ambulances so far. He will never be able to live independently.

In spite of this, he is a happy, determined boy and his parents Emma, 39 and John 40, are fundraising to offer him the best quality of life possible. In July, William is walking ten miles (with support) to help raise funds for the equipment and therapy he needs.

The family are currently trying to raise £5,160 for a rubber wet-pour surface from his bedroom to the garden so that he doesn’t hurt himself during falls, and to give him more confidence in his movements.

Emma said: ‘When he walks on the same surface at the hospice, you can see that he’s more confident and able to move better. He’s defied the odds to get to where he is – we were told that he might never walk at all. He’s so determined and we don’t want to let anything stand in his way.’

The family has to fundraise constantly for specialised physio, sensory therapy, speech and occupational therapy and more.

So far William has completed four miles of his ten-mile walk, using his walking frame or supported by his parents and a chest harness.

Tree of Hope helps families to fundraise for children’s operations, therapies and equipment that are unobtainable via the NHS and provides access to a registered charity providing more effective and efficient ways of fundraising, unlike traditional crowdfunding. To donate to William’s fund, visit

For more information, images or to arrange interviews please contact Catherine Cooper on 00 33 5 61 69 57 89, 00 33 6 09 03 55 88 or

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