Safe haven needed for smiling Elliot

Smiler: Elliot Eland, who has a rare condition, needs a safer room at night
Smiler: Elliot Eland, who has a rare condition, needs a safer room at night
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A youngster suffering from a rare genetic condition of which one of the side effects is frequent laughing needs a safe room at night as he only sleeps for a few hours.

Elliot Eland, two, of Mounsey Road, Bamber Bridge, near Preston, is one of just a few hundred people in the country with Angelman’s Syndrome, a rare disorder which slows down the development of the brain.

Although he is always cheerful and happy, Elliot has intellectual and development delay and speech impairment. He cannot walk and is fed liquids through a mini button directly into his stomach.

Another symptom of his condition is that he does not seem to need as much sleep during the night as most people and his parents Gale and Craig believe he only sleeps around four hours a night.

As Elliot is getting too big for his cot, they want to raise money to adapt his bedroom so it is a safe place for him at night when he is wakeful.

Gale, 41, said: “Elliot goes to bed really well, but he wakes up during the night and is awake for most of it.

“At the moment, he does not wake us up too, but we are conscious that Elliot is almost three and that his bedroom is not a safe place for him to be in alone.

“We want to adapt his bedroom and make it a comfortable and safe place for him with specialist equipment and soft play areas as Elliot is completely unaware of danger.”

Elliot’s family and friends created a fundraising society called One Big Tickle to raise awareness and funds for Elliot’s care as he grows up.

Friends of the family, Bernard McNaboe 65, Greg Lowde 54, Karen Lowde, 49 and Christopher Hatch, 31, will be taking part in the Preston Guild Marathon tomorrow to raise sponsorship money for Elliot.

Gale said: “Craig and I would like to say a huge thank you to Karen, Greg, Chris and Bernard for their overwhelming support and friendship. It is wonderful to see how many people are behind Elliot.”

Elliot faces further care in the future including needing a wheelchair and his parents are already learning sign language to communicate with him.

Angelman’s Syndrome was identified in 1965 by English physician Dr Harry Angelman, who noted excessive laughter, stiff gait, jerky movements and an absence of speech was associated with the condition.

Since then, less than 1,000 cases have been recorded. Children who suffer from the condition are deceptively cheerful.

One Big Tickle raises funds to benefit Elliot directly.

For more details on fundraising for Elliot visit: