THE mother of a teenager who battled cancer as a 16-month-old baby to find it had returned when he was 16-years-old, says she hopes to make Christmas as special as possible for her son.

Lewis Thornton, now 18, has suffered a string of heartbreaking blows. Following an operation to remove a brain tumour and intensive radiotherapy, Lewis developed an abscess on his brain and then meningitis, which means he has lost the use of his right hand, arm and leg and the hearing in one ear.

Earlier this year, doctors said they were unable to cure his cancer, but were currently successfully controlling it using chemotherapy.

His mother, Rebecca Thompson, said Lewis was looking forward to spending Christmas with his three younger brothers and other relatives.

Speaking last week, Ms Thompson, said: “It should be a special day. It’s important everyone is together and Lewis is with his brothers and everyone can be happy. I plan to buy Lewis some really nice things.”

A huge fundraising effort for the popular former York High School pupil was launched to help convert part of his mother’s home off Tadcaster Road into a comfortable and accessible living area.

While it was hoped the room would be completed by Christmas, Ms Thompson said plans had been made, but they were waiting for permission to do the work. She said she hoped it would be ready by January.

Ms Thompson said they had been overwhelmed by the generosity of people, which has seen a musical event staged and hundreds of pounds raised at Lewis’s old school when Year Eight pupil and family friend Leon Boyce had his shoulder-length hair cut off as other students cheered.

Colourful Lewis Thornton Appeal Brain Cancer Awareness wristbands have been sold and Rodgers of York Furniture Store has donated a bed.

For more information about Lewis’s appeal, visit his Facebook group “Lewis Thornton Appeal”.