PARENTS

Builder Installs £6,000 Bathroom For Young Girl With Terminal Cancer - All For Free

30/10/2014 17:28 | Updated 20 May 2015

Builder installs £6,000 bathroom for young girl with terminal cancer - all for free

A builder from Essex has become an unlikely hero to a young girl with terminal cancer.

Vince Knight, from Grays, in Essex, provided a quote for a new downstairs wet room at Katie Anderson's family home for her mum, Dee.

Katie was born with neurofibromatosis - a condition which causes tumours to grow along her nerves.

In 2011, a scan discovered a tumour at the back of her brain near her spinal cord, and she underwent chemotherapy.

The tumour returned in March this year, and Katie is now in a wheelchair.

Her family home has a bathroom upstairs, which means Katie cannot access it without help from her family.

When Vince realised the quote he was giving was for a wet room to help Katie, he decided to complete the room for free – a project that would have cost £6,000.

On completion, Vince posted a photo of himself with Katie on Facebook – and their story has now gone around the world.

Vince's Facebook page for his business gained more than 1.6million views – and 45,000 people have 'Liked' his status update about the room.

Speaking to reporters about the project, Vince said: "The reaction to the wet room has just blown me away. It was just a way of giving something back but I have been stunned by how it has touched so many people.

"I've had tears in my eyes as I read the messages of support. I've even had to turn off the noise for the Facebook notifications on my mobile as it has been driving me mad.

"I came away from Dee's house after pricing-up the job and I felt quite sad, so I spoke to a few of my mates in the trade and asked if they could help out with some materials.

"When I phoned Dee back to tell her that I would be doing the job for free, there was just silence on the end of the line - I think she dropped the phone in shock.

"Some people have said it's good publicity for me but it's never been about that."

Katie, who lives with her mum and sister Hannah, added: "Vince is lovely and very funny.

"I was in the shower for about an hour the first time I used it. I hadn't seen myself since March as the mirrors weren't low enough before. Now I can spend hours looking at myself and doing my hair."

Sadly, Katie's cancer is stage four, so is inoperable. However, she has received three courses of chemotherapy to fight it.

Speaking about Vince's generosity, Katie's mum Dee said: "Wipe Away Those Tears (a charity) had offered to fit the wet-room for free and asked me to get a quote.

"Vince turned up about four weeks ago - he met Katie and they got on so well. We were standing on the pavement outside the hospital for chemo when he called back with a quote.

"He said we're going to do it for free - a gift from me to Katie. I burst into tears. Four weeks ago we were looking at an 18-month waiting list for a wet-room through social services.

"The generosity of Vince and everybody on the internet has just been overwhelming. It's great as the wet room has given her back her independence which is so important for a little girl."

Suggest a correction