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'My son is smiling again': Generous hotelier rescues disabled youngsters' seaside holiday

PUBLISHED: 13:15 17 November 2019 | UPDATED: 13:17 17 November 2019

Thomas Kaye (centre, with glasses) with his family. Thomas is set to go on a holiday to Blackpool with other young adults from the Hamlet Centre in Norwich. Picture: C/O the Kaye family

Thomas Kaye (centre, with glasses) with his family. Thomas is set to go on a holiday to Blackpool with other young adults from the Hamlet Centre in Norwich. Picture: C/O the Kaye family

The Kaye family

A family who were left devastated after a rare holiday fell through have thanked the hotel which "rescued" their trip.

Thomas Kaye and his father Tony Kaye, from Norwich. Picture: C/O the Kaye familyThomas Kaye and his father Tony Kaye, from Norwich. Picture: C/O the Kaye family

Thomas Kaye, 26, who is disabled, was due to go on a holiday to Blackpool on November 18 with three other young adults who attend the Hamlet Centre in Norwich - but their trip was left in jeopardy after the holiday group they were due to be staying with collapsed.

However, after hearing about the families' plight on social media another hotelier in the seaside town stepped in to save the day - offering them a trip free of charge.

Thomas' father Tony Kaye, from Norwich, said: "We want to say such a big thank you to them for rescuing the day. We just cannot believe the kindness of these people - it is absolutely amazing."

Thomas, from Attleborough, suffers from Lowe's Syndrome, a very rare genetic condition which causes mental disability and for him has caused kidney problems and blindness.

Mr Kaye, 52, said it would be the first trip Thomas had taken without his family since losing his sight - something which had knocked his confidence and been "a big learning curve" for the whole family.

Due to the difficulty of organising holidays for young adults with complex needs, the Hamlet Centre booked the Blackpool break around six months ago.

But on Friday, with just three days to go, Mr Kaye was told the trip had been cancelled after the hotel they were due to stay in, the New Mayfair Hotel, announced it was closing after its parent company went into administration.

"Trying to explain to a disabled adult why the trip that they were looking forward to is not going to happen is extremely difficult, to the point of Thomas asking if they just didn't want him there. It was just heartbreaking," Mr Kaye said.

"He has been looking forward to it for months and months, and it is a holiday for us as his parents as well."

Thomas's mother Carolyn issued a plea on Facebook to try and save the holiday. It was spotted by the manager at the Bond Hotel in Blackpool, a specialist in breaks for disabled adults and children, which offered the group a free four-night stay.

Mr Kaye said: "They pulled it out of the fire and offered us a holiday. It is just such a big relief. Tom is smiling again."

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