AN APPEAL to allow a three-year-old cerebral palsy sufferer to take his first steps has moved in leaps and bounds with nearly £1,000 collected on Saturday alone, bringing the young superhero fan closer to receiving a life-changing operation.

A collection in the town centre followed by a family rock’n’roll night at Rodbourne Cheney Working’s Men Club raised a remarkable £905 at the weekend for little Jayden-Vito Mazzotta-Drapper, of Walcot, pushing the current fundraising total to £22,500 - just six months after the launch of the campaign to get him walking at last.

Jayden was diagnosed with spastic diplegia at the age of one, a muscle-stiffness which prevents him from standing on his legs or walking without the support of a frame.

In December, his family set out to secure £35,000 to cover the cost of a complex operation, which would enable the little boy to recover full use of his legs, and the subsequent months of physiotherapy.

The three-year-old was deemed eligible for the selective dorsal rhizotomy by surgeons at the Great Western Hospital last month and is now awaiting an appointment at Southmead Hospital in Bristol, where the operation would take place, to get the green light from its team.

With more than half the sum already raised thanks to the community’s support, things are looking up for Jayden whose condition is gradually worsening.

“He gets cramps because his leg is so bent in and he is in pain so he is going to get Botox injected in his right leg and it will be put in plaster,” said his mother Charlene.

“His muscles have got worse and it will help loosen them and help set his foot how it should be, rather than bent.

“Some kids really benefit from Botox and some don’t so we will see but if it could help with the pain it would be a bonus.”

Seeing funds coming in without fail at each collection and at this latest rock’n’roll evening has proved heart-warming although the prospect of sending her son into the operating theatre is still daunting.

“I am feeling very happy,” she added.

“Obviously it makes you feel a little bit anxious that it’s getting closer. But the evening was fantastic.

“It was nice to see people put the effort in.

“It was organised by Maria Strange and her father’s band Nitelife Duo performed. I really want to thank the Strange family.

“We were also in the town centre for four hours on Saturday and we raised £701. It’s not long really. People were very supportive. Jimmy Moore was also busking for us on the day.”