Brave Nicole in line for award

A YOUNGSTER from Bexhill who has cerebral palsy and cannot walk or talk is in line for an award honouring courageous children.

Nine-year-old Nicole Talbot has survived against all the odds after being born four months prematurely weighing just 1lb 5oz.

Although she is severely disabled and needs around-the-clock care, Nicole, the youngest of three children, has already managed to live way beyond her life expectancy.

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Now she's been nominated for the title of Britain's Bravest Kid in a competition run by Chat magazine and the chance to win her family a dream holiday or 1,000 in prize money.

Her mum Tracy said: "It would be amazing to hear Nicole say 'Mummy' but we've got our own sign language. So many times we've nearly lost her, but she's a true survivor, always bouncing back."

Nicole, who has a 16-year-old sister, Emma and a brother, Karl, who's 11, was 18 months old before she was allowed home from hospital and so far has had five gruelling and painful operations.

She also has a chronic lung disorder and can only be fed through a tube into her stomach.

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"I'd love the holiday but this is for Nicole and the difficulty with holidays is taking her oxygen and equipment with us. If we won I'd use the money for some much-needed equipment," added Tracy of Ticehurst Avenue.

The winner will be announced in early May.