A Royal Wootton Bassett boy who was left partially paralysed after doctors discovered a tumour in his spine, is excited to play sport again.

Toby Richardson was finishing his final year of primary school when an MRI scan in June revealed a tumour wrapped around his spinal cord that spanned two-thirds of its length.

And just three months after undergoing an eight-hour operation to remove the tumour, the 11-year-old is getting back to doing what he loves.

He attended his first wheelchair rugby session on Monday evening in Gloucester where he borrowed the club's spare wheelchair, and plans to join Swindon's basketball team Shock in October.

Dad Mark, 41, said: "It's been life-changing for everyone in the house.

"We're trying to explore different sports so we can figure out what he likes and what we can facilitate. The Paralympics especially got us thinking about what could work for Toby.

"He surprises us all the time. His mental attitude towards it all is so positive.

"The psychologist who works with him told us to expect some down days but I think there have only been three days where he has not been himself. Other than that he's raring to go.

"He's starting secondary school next week and before all this I had to drag him to school but now he's so eager to go."

Toby first complained of back pain back in May and was initially diagnosed with scoliosis, a condition where the spine twists and curves to the side.

But on a secondary school open day in June, he fell over multiple times when he kept losing leg control.

By the time he was rushed to Great Western Hospital, his legs were no longer functioning.

Mark said: "The surgeons took out a section of his vertebrae and the tumour exploded.

"They explained it like a marshmallow being squished between your fingers. The spinal cord was massively under pressure and the tumour was pinching the spinal cord and stopping his legs from working."

Surgeons could only remove 70% of the tumour because they didn't want to affect Toby's upper body function so he will continue to receive regular scans to monitor the tumour's growth.

Doctors told the Richardson family that Toby would be wheelchair-bound for life.

But, while Toby predominantly relies on a wheelchair, his determination has meant he can now walk short distances on crutches.

His dad added: "He's made a massive recovery and stunned us all so he has partial paralysis over full paralysis.

"It is now a matter of learning how to manage his condition the best he can."

Toby has received a lot of support from the community, the Royal Wootton Bassett RFC - and even from some paralympians!

Swindon basketball star bronze medallist Ben Fox contacted Toby and told him about the Swindon teams he can join.

Freya Levy, who competes at international level in rugby, basketball and football, spoke with Toby on Zoom as soon as he got out of hospital.

His dad said: "You wouldn't believe the support from people we haven't even met. It's quite emotional looking at people's generosity.

"The PE teacher at his new school Royal Wootton Bassett Academy has been fantastic. He is rejigging the PE programme to make sure that Toby's included.

"Every step of the way, it's been fantastic with people's support."

A multi-sports wheelchair is more mobile than a day-to-day wheelchair and will help Toby enjoy PE, rugby and basketball again. To help the Richardsons raise money to buy this chair, visit GoFundMe and search 'Help Toby access sport'.