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Wirral children meet their firefighting 'hero' Sam
Fireman Sam with (children left to right) Korey Johnson, A.J Johnson, Jack Eccleson , Lillie-Mae Johnson, Charlotte Eccleson, Josh Eccleson and mum Karen Eccleson.
TWO Wirral children got the chance to meet their hero Fireman Sam when he visited Birkenhead.
Four-year-old Steven Williams, who is blind and has septo-optic dysplasia, optic nerve hypoplasia and eye nystagmus, and eight-year-old Charlotte Eccleson, who has asperger syndrome, met the children’s favourite at the Pyramids Shopping Centre.
Steven’s mum, Cheryl, said the chance to meet his idol made his day.
Cheryl, from Prenton, said: “Steven loves Fireman Sam but when he is on the television, obviously he can only hear him. Today he has been able to meet him personally, feel him and it means he can use some of his other senses to make the most of seeing him in the way other children would.
"To see his face when he met him was lovely. His face just lit up with this huge smile and it really was very special for him to have his own personal meeting with him.
"He is always such a happy and determined child anyway so it is no surprise to see a smile on his face. He has never really let things get in his way."
And Charlotte, from Moreton, was also excited to have a personal meet and greet with Fireman Sam.
Charlotte’s mum Karen, 30, said: "Queuing and crowded places cause Charlotte to get very stressed which is not nice for me but more importantly, it is not good for her either.
"So, if the shopping centre hadn’t been able to offer us this fantastic personal meeting with Fireman Sam, then I simply wouldn’t have come.
"The thing with asperger syndrome is that it is a hidden disability so outwardly Charlotte looks perfectly healthy but we have to think about it all the time to make sure she is as happy as possible."
Also attending the event were fire officers from Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service who took the opportunity to talk to families about the upcoming fireworks and bonfire night season.
Michael Buratti, arson reduction officer for Wirral, said: “We are coming up to one of our busiest time of year so it has been terrific to come today and give families safety messages and advice.
"Linking in with Fireman Sam has been very handy and with there being so many people here today, it has given us the opportunity to engage with around 4-500 people and promote our key safety messages."