Lapland Christmas wish

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A little girl with an incurable disease was granted a Christmas to remember thanks to a trip to see Santa Claus in Lapland.

Abigail Cook, eight, from Warmsworth enjoyed a whole host of festive fun thanks to Starlight Children’s Foundation, the UK’s leading wish granting charity for children with serious and terminal illnesses.

Abigail suffers from late infantile batten disease, which is a rare neurodegenerative disorder - a terminal condition which is very rare and that will over time lead to the Warmsworth youngster losing her sight and mobility.

Her Christmas wish was to meet Father Christmas in Lapland and she was very excited when she heard that Starlight would be making her wish come true.

With his mum Lindsey, dad Martin and brother Oliver, aged 12, Abigail spent a perfect three days in Lapland, where they enjoyed a breathtaking ride through the forest on a sleigh pulled by a team of huskies, riding on snowmobiles weaving in and out of the snow covered trees, meeting the reindeer and, of course, Santa and his elves.

The family drank warming cups of berry juice around the campfire, made snowmen, threw snowballs and went sledging.

On their return, Abigail’s mum Lindsey said, “Abigail has found so much happiness on this trip. She has met other children that she can be herself with and it has given us so many precious memories.

“It was also an opportunity to meet other families going through similar experiences. Thank you so much to Starlight”

Each year the charity sends a group of families to Luosto, which is a traditional Finnish resort that offers a magical Lapland experience, and Abigail and her family were able to join Starlight’s eighth annual trip in their quest to meet Santa.

The trip was the latest on a bucket list of things Abigail wants to achieve. So far, Abigail has ticked off a number of wishes including swimming with dolphins in Florida thanks to generous fundraisers.