Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Tiny Boy's Big Place in His Family; TV Critic

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Tiny Boy's Big Place in His Family; TV Critic

Article excerpt

ANYBODY who tuned into The Tiniest Boy in Britain this week must have stifled a sniffle or two. It told the story of adorable Alex - a two-year-old who is Britain's only primordial dwarf.

The toddler, of Liverpool, suffers from a rare genetic condition that stunts his physical development, meaning he will grow no taller than three feet.

Alex was so cute and brave. He rarely whimpered, apart from when he came round from a gruelling operation, and he was lavished with love from his family.

The documentary followed him as he travelled to America to consult a specialist in primordial dwarfism and to have surgery to discover if he was showing signs of a fatal aneurysm.

His family were his rock. Too young to really understand what is happening to him, they took all the emotional burden.

Part of the excellent Extraordinary People series, this fascinating documentary showed how Alex's condition affects the whole family, including his older brother and sister, who faced an anxious wait to find out if their brother could die at any moment.

Alex's parents, Sue and John, talked frankly about living with a condition that has baffled medical experts.

The family found time to visit the Little People of America convention, where they met the parents of other primordial dwarves.

It was so touching when his dad told the cameras: "Our son will walk with giants for the rest of his life but to us he is a titan and already people stand in his shadow - his family."

Brilliant.

THE excellent ITV drama Torn continued this week. It's nice for the channel to do something gritty instead of the usual mediocre 'everything turns out OK in the end' drama.

This week saw Alice, who was abducted as a child, return to the family home she last saw when she was four years old.

The teenage girl is brilliantly played by Jo Woodcock, who I learned this week is the niece of the late Roger Woodcock, a former journalist at our sister papers the Hearld&Post and the Sunday Sun. …

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