THE Defend the NHS in Shropshire Group led by Gill George from Ludlow quite correctly draws attention to the distances people in the area travel to get specialist care.

However, the county has one special unit where people with spinal injuries are referred from other parts of the country. The Robert Jones and Agnus Hunt NHS Foundation Trust in Oswestry is one of 11 specialist spinal units in the UK.

Daniel Edwards lives just 10 minutes from the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham. But the 25-year-old spent many months in the hospital in Oswestry after suffering life changing injuries in an accident at work three days before Christmas in 2016.

He was repairing a machine at a recycling unit when it was accidentally switched on causing Daniel to fall, suffering a crushed vertebra that has left him paralysed from the waist down.

At the end of last year his former employer was fined £80,000 by Birmingham Magistrates after admitting a breach of Health and Safety Regulations.

Initially, Daniel was taken to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital but two days later was moved to Shropshire where he spent many months.

Now back home Daniel is looking to rebuild his life, pinning his hopes of walking again on a set of robotic legs.

But this will cost a lot of money as will other essential changes if he is to fulfil his wish to make something of his life.

Tim Beasley, head of catastrophic injuries at specialist injury lawyers Levenes, says that the task ahead is to give the young man the best possible life.

“We cannot change what has happened, but we can do all we can to give Daniel the best possible future after these life changing injuries,” said Mr Beasley.

Currently, Daniel lives at home with his mum Kath and dad Mark and work is needed to adapt the home including fitting a special unit to allow him to take a shower.

“Eventually, Daniel will need a home of his own which will need to be a specially converted bungalow,” added Mr Beasley

“He will need a more advanced wheelchair and a car that has been converted to enable him to drive.

“Unfortunately, Daniel is not expected to walk normally again but we are hoping that robotic legs will give him some mobility.”

Daniel is still trying to come to terms with what happened to him.

“I plan to go to college and want to help people who have been through the kind of experience I have gone through,” he said.

Daniel also hopes to play wheelchair basketball and one day to travel to Australia and the USA and make the best of his life.