Birthday celebration against all the odds

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When Dallas Rickett, of Farnsfield, went into labour on Christmas Eve in 1986 she never dreamt her twins would be born with a life-limiting illness meaning they were unlikely to survive their teenage years.

But Thomas and Charlotte will be celebrating their 27th birthday this year, despite suffering from a condition which means they need round-the-clock care.

At the age of seven the Farnsfield twins were diagnosed with Sanfilippo syndrome - a rare genetic disease that causes babies’ development to slow from the age of three. Between the ages of two and five they rapidly decline mentally and physically and are not expected to live past their 20th birthday.

Dallas (57) said: “Dallas added: “They are brilliant children. They are like chalk and cheese. “They are both very loving and I get lots of cuddles.”

The pair are cared for at Rainbows Children’s Hospice - the only one in the East Midlands that cares for young people with life-limiting illnesses.