A sick Hartlepool youngster was allowed out of her hospital bed to watch primary teacher Dewi Tidball say goodbye to her long locks.
When staff and students at West View Primary School found out one of their pupils, Elly Mae Waugh, had been diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia during the summer holidays they decided to support the youngster by raising cash for child cancer charity, CLIC Sargent.
And, teacher, Mrs Tidball, 25, decided to go the extra mile and have her waist-length dark hair shaved off for the charity and the locks donated to The Little Princess Trust, which make wigs from real hair for children who have lost their own.
Elly Mae, who has been undergoing gruelling chemotherapy treatment at the RVI in Newcastle where she even spent her 10th birthday, was allowed out of hospital for the afternoon to join her school friends to watch Mrs Tidball go under the scissors.
The whole school packed into the hall to watch the headshave and four children were chosen to help the hairdresser carry out the task.
Mrs Tidball said it felt strange to have no hair and would take a while to get used to.
She explained: “I had grown my hair really long for my wedding at the end of last month and was intending to have it cut a bit shorter afterwards because hair that long is not practical when working in a school.
“Then when we heard about Elly Mae being ill, I decided to have it all shaved off for CLIC Sargent. It’s only hair and it will grow back.”
Money has been pouring in for Mrs Tidball’s brave act and along with the fund-raising activities at the school they hope to top £2,000.
Elly Mae’s parents, Dean Waugh, 46, and Diane Metcalfe, 50, of Jones Road, were at the hairshave along with her brother, Joseph, 22.
Dean said: “It is just fantastic what the school and Mrs Tidball are doing.”
The family took Elly Mae to the doctors because she was suffering a lot of bruising and redness.
Dean said: “They sent us to North Tees Hospital for tests, I think they thought it might be meningitis, but it came back that it was leukaemia.
“It was a massive blow at first, but when you get on the wards and meet all the other families, it doesn’t seem as bad. The doctors are over the moon with her progress, which really helps you to cope.”
n Anyone who would still like to donate to the hair shave can visit the fundraising page https://www.justgiving.com/Dewi-Bradley1/?utm_id=13.