A TEENAGER from Bournemouth has received a vital boost in his bid to one day represent his country at the elite level of sport.

Leon Meal-Moss, who has a prosthetic leg, is a talented rower and being tipped to one day compete at the Paralympics.

To aid his training and help him achieve the best results possible the 14-year-old Bournemouth Collegiate School (BCS) pupil needed a specialist waterproof prosthetic leg, which cost £9,000.

However, thanks to the support of his classmates, teachers and backing from The Dorset Children's Foundation (DCF) a pirate-themed beach walk managed to raise £12,620.

A group of 600 pupils took part in the 'One Foot Forward' event from Sandbanks to Southbourne, which took place in September.

‘One Foot Forward’ was the name of the fundraising walk from Sandbanks to Southbourne and all 600 pupils took part as well as staff and they raised an incredible £12,620 and Leon now has his leg and is training hard.

The Paralympic hopeful visited The DCF's charity shop in Boscombe and was presented with a cheque from the event by Mr England, Jack Eyers, who himself is an amputee and completed the walk,

"I've made it my mission to become a role model and encourage people to work towards achieving their dreams no matter what their age or ability," Jack said.

"The Dorset Children’s Foundation is a charity very close to my heart as it aims to support the lives of sick and disabled children. I will continue to support The DCF as an ambassador.

"Personally I have recently started a new journey training with British Canoe as a Tokyo 2020 podium potential. The DCF are also supporting my journey with equipment. Watch this space."

Leon, who is part of BCS's rowing academy, had developmental problems from birth and had his lower left leg amputated when he was was just eight months old.

Simon Coulter, head of marketing BCS, added: “ The link between the DCF and BCS is something that just makes sense. They have become an integral part of our surrounding community and our partnership with them cements that even further. Their infectious enthusiasm and dedication is evident in all they do and is testament to what they continue to achieve.’