WIRRAL all-girl dance group MerseyGirls missed out on the Britain's Got Talent grand prize after wowing the judges for a third time.

Formerly known as Just Us, MerseyGirls received Alesha Dixon's Golden Buzzer in the audition process.

In the semi-finals won the hearts of the viewers by becoming runners up to two-piece The Pensionalities on Thursday night's semi-final, automatically finding a place in the finals.

Made up of best friends Alice, Poppy, Julia, Annie and Rebecca the group were so close to winning the £250,000 cash prize which was hoped to go towards getting specialist surgery for lead member Julia Carlile who battles with the spinal condition scoliosis.

Lead member Julia told the show: "When I'm dancing I just feel like a normal kid, I completely forget about my condition.

"This could be my last performance with the girls before my surgery which is a really scary thought.

"My operation is a risk because it could mean I will never dance again

"The support has been incredible.

"Simon offering to pay for my surgery was so overwhelming and dancing on stage with your friends is the best feeling in the world."

On Thursday night head judge Simon Cowell offered to pay for Julia's surgery no matter where they ended up in the competition.

The girls were consistently brilliant in each of their performances and have made fans all over the world while educating people about scoloisis.

On Twitter the group posted: "We want to thank everyone who has voted for us and have let us live our dreams, we are so grateful to anyone who has voted and supported us.

"We have met so many people who work at BGT and we can't thank them enough for helping us through this journey.

"Congratulations to Tokio Myers for winning BGT.

"He was incredible tonight and is an amazing person as well as an amazing artist.

"We will never forget this experience and we will treasure the memories we have made forever. All we can say is thank you."

On the night pianist Tokio Myers was crowned the champion.

An average of 8.2 million viewers tuned in to watch the finale when it aired from 7.30pm until 10.05pm, according to overnight data.

The final episode of BGT had been rescheduled to air on Saturday evening rather than Sunday, so as not to clash with Ariana Grande’s One Love Manchester benefit concert for the victims of the Manchester terror attack.