Dad gets on his bike to help his little boy

Jonathan Topham (left) with son Finlay (centre) and fellow rider John Foster.

Jonathan Topham (left) with son Finlay (centre) and fellow rider John Foster.

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A FATHER will cycle from Edinburgh to London to help eradicate a rare muscle wasting disease afflicting his four-year-old son.

Jonathan Topham, 38, of Houghton Road, Grantham, found out his son Finlay had been born with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy 18 months ago.

The rare genetic condition has no known cure, predominantly affects boys and cuts life expectancy to late teens or early twenties.

Finlay’s mum, Tracey Topham said: “We knew something wasn’t right from an early age because he would never walk. He had a lot of tests and he was diagnosed with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy.

“It is a life-limiting genetic disease and his development is delayed overall. I am a carrier so if I have any more boys there is a 50 per cent chance they will get it too.”

Tracey’s body is not affected by carrying the disease as it only affects women in very rare cases.

Finlay already uses a wheelchair to help him get around but his parents know he is likely to be fully paralysed by the time he reaches his teenage years.

Jonathan has wanted to do something to raise money for the charity Action Duchenne since Finlay was diagnosed.

The charity aims to one day find a cure for the disease.

He will be joined on the bike ride by life-long friend John Foster, 38, of Worcester Road, Grantham.

John will be raising money for diabetes care at Grantham Hospital after his father died of diabetes last year.

He said: “It is part of an on-going project to raise as much money as we possibly can in as little time possible.”

The pair set off from Edinburgh Castle on Sunday, April 17. The money raised by the pair will be split between the two causes.

To find out more about Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy log on to the website www.actionduchenne.org

l If you would like to donate to help the pair raise cash then call 07879473815 or 07707529278.

Photo: MGJP-293B