Disney fairytale dream comes true for inspirational Black Country three-year-old

An inspirational three-year-old girl from the Black Country has had her Disney fairytale dreams come true.

Meghan and Minnie Mouse
Meghan and Minnie Mouse

Meghan Barnett, from Stourbridge, spent three days at Hoar Cross Hall in Staffordshire, which has transformed into an enchanted forest.

Her dreams were granted by The Walt Disney Company UK and Ireland, Make-A-Wish UK and The Kentown Wizard Foundation who treated around 240 families.

During birth, the youngster got stuck in the birthing canal and was born without oxygen and suffered stage two brain damage – before she started having seizures.

She was put on life support and was constantly in an out of hospital. She was later diagnosed with extreme epilepsy, cerebral palsy and global development delay.

The Disney experience at the mansion.

Meghan's mother Szandra said: "Most parents during the first year are looking for all those small milestones a baby hits. Our first year was just hospital all the time. Her results were so shocking – her brain looked like a dalmatian there was so much damage.

"We quickly realised we had to sit on our train and do our own journey unlike many other families. We just have our own milestones and goals and it’s just a constant learning process to understand all the different conditions Meghan faces. Now we just try and live and cope with it the best we can.

"She’s a lovely little soul who’s so pure so seeing her enjoy the singing and the characters was amazing. Our usual highlight is a trip to the local shopping centre for an all you can eat buffet so this has been truly special!”

The Disney experience at the mansion.

The youngster enjoyed the magical experience between September 14 and 16 at the event – the UK's largest ever Disney wish experience – which included celebrities Helen Skelton, Matt Willis and Millie Mackintosh, who turned out for children and young people diagnosed with a serious illness or life-limiting condition.

The transformation of the manor will continue until September 28 and aims to provide hundreds of critically ill children, their siblings and parents with a tailor-made, immersive Disney experience.

Deborah Armstrong, senior vice president and country manager at Disney UK & Ireland, said: “I’m so pleased we are able to work with Make-A-Wish UK and Kentown Wizard to create another magical experience for hundreds of children and their families who are living with serious illness.

"The joy and magic of a Disney wish, featuring meet and greets with iconic Disney characters and unique interactive experiences, helps families create priceless memories they can cherish for a lifetime.

"This is our biggest UK wish event to date and being able to create even more Moments that Matter is so inspiring – it’s a personal highlight in the Disney calendar.”

The Disney experience at the mansion.

The Make-A-Wish UK families took part in a variety of Disney activities, including a Winnie-the-Pooh and Friends picnic; Jedi Training Academy; a Mickey and Minnie Bedtime Story; a Frozen Sing-Along; Story Time with Belle in the Grand Ballroom and a Marvel Training Initiative featuring Marvel Super Heroes.

Make-A-Wish UK chief executive, Jason Suckley, said: “Over 60,000 children in the UK are living with a critical illness, and may not be able to travel abroad due to the limits of their condition – or because they tragically may not have long left.

"We’re absolutely delighted that over 200 children have had their wishes come true by experiencing the magic of Disney right here in the UK, providing light and joy right when they and their families need it most.

"We are extremely grateful to Disney and to The Kentown Wizard Foundation for making this event possible.”

The project was funded by The Kentown Wizard Foundation, which exists to have a positive impact on the lives of children and young adults with serious, life-limiting conditions and disabilities.

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