A GROUP of 30 football fans are taking on a 32-mile walk from Kidderminster Harriers to Solihull Moors Football Club in support of a girl with leukaemia.

Bella Hudson, from Kidderminster, was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia (ALL) aged just eight years old and has been fighting the illness ever since.

The walk is in aid of the national blood cancer charity Cure Leukaemia, and the team wants to raise £10,000 for the charity that helps fund clinical trials to find a cure for blood cancer.

People can donate to the team’s challenge via their Just Giving page.

Bella was diagnosed on Friday, August 13 2021 – a date that will be forever etched into the memory of her father Tom Hudson.

Mr Hudson said: “The doctor spoke to us about it and told us as much as he could at the time with further tests still to be completed. They knew it was leukaemia just from looking at the cell count – but they needed to understand what form of leukaemia it was. It hits you like a tonne of bricks.”

“It really threw me back. My partner was absolutely broken".

Kidderminster Shuttle: Bella Hudson was diagnosed with leukaemia aged just eightBella Hudson was diagnosed with leukaemia aged just eight (Image: Cure Leukaemia)

Bella was then immediately transferred to Birmingham Children’s Hospital where she began a course of chemotherapy which would last for four months – only to receive the news that it wasn’t working.

"It was a shock when we were initially told that nothing was working, Mr Hudson said. 

"We were told to start preparing for the worst.

"You are still hoping for that miracle. I still remember the day that the doctor told us the news that the treatment was finally working. She pulled me to one side, away from my wife who had been distraught throughout.

"She grabbed my hand while she was jumping up and said “it’s working.”

The treatment meant that Bella needed a stem cell transplant. She would be hospital-bound for eight months with complications and reactions to medication as she completed the transplant but her parents knew that something still wasn’t quite right.

Bella managed to fight it for another 12 months before she relapsed – and her parents were delivered the heart-breaking news that the leukaemia had now morphed into the more aggressive Acute Myeloid Leukaemia (AML).

Kidderminster Shuttle: Bella spent her ninth, tenth and eleventh birthdays in hospitalBella spent her ninth, tenth and eleventh birthdays in hospital (Image: Cure Leukaemia)

Mr Hudson added: "We were just at a loss. We were looking at whether we could get her to America. Then out of nowhere, our consultant told us to give her a few days. We were introduced to our saving grace – Professor Rob Wynn up at the Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital.

"We had a Zoom call with Rob and he explained that he thought he could save her. He told us it straight and explained that he was trying to open up a previously closed clinical trial as he thought he could save Bella’s life.”

“My partner and I had a choice to make – either we take a chance with the clinical trial and the additional transplant and she dies, or she suffers and passes away in her current state.

"It was a no-brainer – we had to do what we could to help keep our little girl alive.”

Bella is now eleven years old having spent her ninth, tenth and eleventh birthdays in hospital.

She is currently in remission thanks to the amazing support from Professor Rob Wynn and has recently received her third negative bone marrow result with her next one due in six months. She now returns normal blood results.