Freya, 6, swims for hospice


A big-hearted six-year-old has swum a staggering two-and-a-half miles for charity after she saw a youngster suffering from cancer.

Little Freya Cooper raised £600 for the Rainbows Children’s Hospice in Loughborough after telling her grandparents she wanted to do something to help children who are poorly.

Despite suffering a bad tooth abscess and being on antibiotics, Freya, who goes to school in Cotmanhay, ploughed on and completed 201 lengths at Kimberley Leisure Centre.

Granddad Andy Cooper said: “It’s just so lovely that a little girl of her age wanted to do something like that, and incredible that she managed to swim so far. I am so, so proud of her. I love her to bits.”

Freya’s grandma, Julie, said: “She just really wanted to do something for children who are poorly.

“She is that type of child. She’s very selfless. She loves animals and wants to take care of sick people. I work in an old peoples’ home and she goes in and visits, and sits chatting to the residents.”

Andy,55, said Freya decided she wanted to do the charity swim after spotting a girl with no hair near her home.

“She asked me why the girl had no hair and said ‘Some of these children die, don’t they grandad?’”

“For her to think like that was quite upsetting. A week or two later she said she wanted to do something, and I suggested swimming because she is really into it.”

Every year generous Freya goes to Mansfield with Andy and other bikers from MFN in Shipley Gate to deliver Easter eggs to firefighters, who in turn donate them to local children. She is now helping to do up her tricycle for the next trip in April.