DCSIMG

Disabled teen is ‘radio star in the making’

Award winning broadcaster Mik Scarlet (right) with his friend and protege George Barnard (left) and BBC 3CR engineer Ben Nye

Award winning broadcaster Mik Scarlet (right) with his friend and protege George Barnard (left) and BBC 3CR engineer Ben Nye

This was a Christmas to remember for aspiring Paralypian George Barnard.

The Lea Manor schoolboy made his radio debut alongside friend and mentor Mik Scarlet.

“I absolutely loved it,” the 14-year-old said. “I found the whole thing fascinatng.”

Award-winning broadcaster Mik met George earlier this year and invited him on to his BBC 3CR Christmas Special on Friday (December 27).

The former Putteridge High pupil said: “George did really well.

“We had a chat about his future plans and what it’s like to train to be a Paralympian.

“He gave a quick round-up of the festive sport and then we played his request – Led Zeppelin’s Immigrant Song.

“He stayed with me for the entire second hour and was a future star in the making.”

George’s proud mum Sian said: “I started to cry about two minutes into the programme. I was rubbish.

“You know what teenagers are like but George came across so grown up and showed himself in an adult light.

“Lots of his friends tuned in and posted comments on Facebook.”

She added: “It’s fantastic that Mik has taken George under his wing. At last he’s got someone who really understands and who’s faced the same difficulties.”
George was born with cerebral palsy but has already amassed a mountain of medals en route to qualifying for the 2020 Paralympics, including several at the Under 23 National Disability Championships in Blackpool last year.

Mik said: “I’ve got something else in the pipeline and I hope we work together in the future – I’ve already offered him my services as an agent.”

 

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