Mods to the rescue in power wheelchair fundraiser for Stevenage pupil

PUBLISHED: 15:19 05 September 2018 | UPDATED: 15:19 05 September 2018

Jensen wearing a 'therasuit' which is used in his physiotherapy. Picture: supplied by Kirsty Mardlin

Jensen wearing a 'therasuit' which is used in his physiotherapy. Picture: supplied by Kirsty Mardlin

supplied by Kirsty Mardlin

A family is organising a Northern Soul gig in aid of a disabled Stevenage pupil’s wheelchair fund.

Jensen Mardlin's parents are fundraising for a power wheelchair for the four-year-old with cerebral palsy. Picture: supplied by Kirsty MardlinJensen Mardlin's parents are fundraising for a power wheelchair for the four-year-old with cerebral palsy. Picture: supplied by Kirsty Mardlin

Jenson Mardlin suffered brain damage when he was born almost three months early, and is now quadriplegic.

“The part of the brain that controls your muscle movements, that’s the bit that’s been damaged,” explained mum Kirsty.

But with the determined help of his physiotherapist, and his time at Lonsdale School in Stevenage, four-year-old Jenson can hold up his head and can indicate his needs with eye contact.

He can also use his Wizzybug, a specialist chair for the under-fives. But looking to the future, Kirsty and her partner, full-time carer Francis, want to boost his independence with a power wheelchair costing £9,200.

Jensen Mardlin with his dad and full-time carer, Francis. Picture: supplied by Kirsty MardlinJensen Mardlin with his dad and full-time carer, Francis. Picture: supplied by Kirsty Mardlin

The more advanced chair not only has more features such as an adjustable height, but its basic frame will last him through to adulthood.

Unfortunately, the chair the family wants is not available to Jenson from Hertfordshire Wheelchair Services.

The Welwyn Garden City-based couple have pulled together £2,000 of the cost already, but as a single-income household they already spend £750 a month on physiotherapy.

Enter Kirsty’s scooter-mad parents Sarah and Tim McCann, who have mobilised support from the Welwyn Stags Scooter Club where they are members.

Jensen Mardlin's parents are fundraising for a power wheelchair for the four-year-old with cerebral palsy. Picture: supplied by Kirsty MardlinJensen Mardlin's parents are fundraising for a power wheelchair for the four-year-old with cerebral palsy. Picture: supplied by Kirsty Mardlin

As part of the mod scene, scooter fans bring with them a love for music genres like Northern Soul, ska, rockabilly and early rock ‘n’ roll.

Through Sarah and Tim, they’ve enlisted several bands to perform for free at a fundraising gig in Welwyn Garden City this Saturday.

Hosts the Shamrock Club have offered the venue for free.

For £12 on the door or £10 in advance, you can see acts such as Coloride, Redmaxxx, Ben Drake and headliner Samuel S Parkes, previously seen supporting Ocean Colour Scene.

Jensen Mardlin's parents are fundraising for a power wheelchair for the four-year-old with cerebral palsy. Picture: supplied by Kirsty MardlinJensen Mardlin's parents are fundraising for a power wheelchair for the four-year-old with cerebral palsy. Picture: supplied by Kirsty Mardlin

Revered photographer and DJ of the 80s mod revival Paul Hallam is coming out of a 25-year retirement for a one-off gig in support of Jenson.

Kirsty has been overwhelmed by the support. “They’ve all just been lovely,” she said.

For more information, see ‘Jenson’s Big Night Out’ at www.facebook.com/events/242172029935427/

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