Family's bid to BBC's DIY SOS to help paralysed teenager

Maisie Lossau, 16, with her parents Dawn and Darrell at their Spixworth home

Maisie Lossau, 16, with her parents Dawn and Darrell at their Spixworth home - Credit: Dawn Lossau

Parents of a paralysed teenager have appealed for help from the BBC's DIY SOS so a garden annexe can be built for the youngster to boost her independence.

Maisie Lossau, 16, from Russell Avenue in Spixworth, was diagnosed with a brain tumour in January 2016 when the family lived in Tuckswood.

Maisie Lossau pictured in July 2015

Maisie Lossau pictured in July 2015 - Credit: Submitted

Surgery carried out soon after the diagnosis to remove the tumour left her paralysed and in that same year the family moved to their Spixworth home, which had to be adapted for her round-the-clock care.

Maisie Lossau pictured in hospital February 2016

Maisie Lossau, after her brain tumour operation, with her mum Dawn and dad Darrell - Credit: Family of Maisie Lossau

Her mother Dawn Lossau, 49, said "there was everything to gain and nothing to lose" with the application to the BBC One programme to build a single-storey annexe at the bottom of their garden.

The part-time credit manager for a solicitors firm said: "It would be phenomenal if it was successful. Maisie is so excited by the thought of it. It gives her back some sort of normality."

The mum added she and her husband Darrell, who is Maisie's full-time carer alongside one other, would go back to the drawing board if the DIY SOS bid was not successful.

However they're keen to get the work done by the time their daughter turned 18.

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She added: "No 18-year-old wants to live with their parents forever. We are striving for her to get her independence and freedom."

Maisie Lossau with her parents and the family dog. Picture: The Brain Tumour Charity

Maisie Lossau with her parents and the family dog. Picture: The Brain Tumour Charity - Credit: The Brain Tumour Charity

Mrs Lossau said the family would struggle to afford an entirely new home to have enough space for the three of them, as well as physiotherapy and carer's equipment, and they liked living in Spixworth.

The teenager's tumour remains stable after her chemotherapy ended in 2019 and her progress from eight weeks of rehabilitation last year was "mind-blowing".

Mrs Lossau added: "She deals with everything that has been thrown at her. She loves life and has got a wicked sense of humour. She is a typical teenager and is an inspiration."

BigFest 2016 fundraising event at Bignold Primary School to support Maisie Lossau who is recovering

BigFest 2016 fundraising event at Bignold Primary School to support Maisie Lossau, who used to attend the school - Credit: Anthony Kelly

Last year the teen who uses a wheelchair managed to stand up in a pool for the first time and her main goals are being able to hug her mum and dad and pick up a book.

Community's ongoing support

Maisie's parents have thanked the support of people across Norwich and Norfolk during her health challenges.

Maisie Lossau, 16, in her Spixworth home

Maisie Lossau, 16, in her Spixworth home - Credit: Dawn Lossau

And as well as that, they have also received messages from the world of celebrity including a worldwide global singing star.

In July 2019, Suffolk-born Ed Sheeran sent an "out-of-the-blue" video message to the teenager.

The video message from Ed Sheeran left Maisie Lossau 'speechless'. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

The video message from Ed Sheeran left Maisie Lossau 'speechless'. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Denise Bradley

The video landed in Mrs Lossau's work inbox to her complete surprise after she had met someone who had a connection to Ed Sheeran and mentioned Maisie.

At the time she said: "When I got the video message at work out of the blue there weren't words to describe the excitement."

Mrs Lossau added that the community had backed and helped them during their improvement works of the family garden which involved creating a summer house for the 16-year-old to meet her friends.

Maisie Lossau and her mum, Dawn, go down the yellow brick road after it was officially opened, which

Maisie Lossau and her mum, Dawn, in their Spixworth garden after it was refurbished in 2017 thanks to community support - Credit: Denise Bradley

She hopes part of the foundations of the summer house area could be used for the annexe.