Ellie’s special Doncaster prom night

Ellie Harper and Jack Bailey at Danum School Prom
Ellie Harper and Jack Bailey at Danum School Prom

Every girl enjoys their prom, but for Ellie Harper the event carried special significance.

Ellie has been a star pupil at Doncaster’s Danum School for the past five years, and plans to go on to do A-levels, despite having medical challenges.

The 16-year old has triumphed over conditions of cerebral palsy and quadriplegia. She is fed using a gastro-tube, and only has use of one finger.

Ellie has a full spinal rod and two years ago weighed under four stone.

Mum Lesley Pitkin, 44, said her daughter expected not to attend the prom at the Earl of Doncaster Hotel. But she was accompanied by fellow student Jack Bailey, and the pair were waved off in a Rolls Royce by neighbours at Sunnyside, Edenthorpe.

“She had a wonderful time,” said Lesley afterwards. “She looked beautiful. Jack gave her a corsage and she was the only girl to wear one. It was lovely to see her there after all her years of working hard. She took 14 exams and already has an A* in one subject.

“Danum is an incredible school. Without the learning support she has had we would have been lost. We had to find ways to get round Ellie’s disabilities and by use of an i-pad and people scribing for her she has managed everything. I’m so proud of her.”

Ellie was carried in to her ‘fairytale’ prom by dad Chris Harper, 47.

“Ellie was born 10 weeks early and diagnosed at birth. We were told she would probably never speak and we had no expectations,” added Lesley. “But she has big plans to go to university then America to work, after taking A-levels in English, IT and media.”