Firefighters give £1,100 to school boy they rescued from horsebox horror accident

Oliver with, from left, White Watch firefighters Neil Massey, Ian Hutchinson, Watch manager Gary Stredder, Ross Sinclair and Nathan Williams

Oliver Hacking

Oliver with, from left, White Watch firefighters Neil Massey, Ian Hutchinson, Watch manager Gary Stredder, Ross Sinclair and Nathan Williams

First published in News This Is Lancashire: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

FIREFIGHTERS have presented a £1,100 cheque to a schoolboy they rescued from beneath a horsebox after an horrific accident.

Bury Fire Station’s White Watch was called to Bolton Road, in Bury, on March 28 when 11-year-old Oliver Hacking was struck by a horse box containing three horses.

The youngster spent months in Royal Manchester Infirmary and had his right leg amputated at the knee. He has also been left weak down his left side caused by brain damage.

Earlier this month, firefighters raised more than £3,000 at an open day at which Oliver and his family members were special guests.

Firefighters decided to split the money between The Fire Fighters Charity and a fund to help Oliver’s family pay for specialist equipment and home adaptations.

Oliver, who now uses a wheelchair, visited the station with his mum, Tracey Ashford, and grandma, Carole Ashford, to receive the donation.

It was the first time he had met some of the firefighters who saved his life.

The youngster had met other members of the watch at the open day on August 3.

Tracey, of Connaught Street, said: “We’re so grateful to the firefighters for what they’ve done for Oliver. At the moment we’re unsure exactly what Oliver will need, but we need to move to a more suitable house and we are hoping to go on holiday to get a break so the money will be really helpful.

“If it wasn’t for the firefighters and paramedics, Oliver wouldn’t be here today.

“The doctors at the hospital told us they didn’t think he’d live the night.

“I don’t know how firefighters do the job they do. I think they’re amazing and we’re over the moon at what they’ve done.” Oliver, who is due to start at Elton High School in Bury next month, had been attending a booster class for his Year Six SAT exams at St Stephen’s Primary School before the collision.

He was treated at the scene by an off-duty nurse and off-duty firefighter from Bolton Central Station until crews arrived minutes later.

The plucky youngster is now on the road to recovery, attending regular physiotherapy sessions.

He likes to spend his time watching wrestling on TV and playing games on his Xbox.

White Watch Manager Gary Stredder said: “Oliver is a very brave young man.

“Without question, we were all praying for him that night after the incident.”

Oliver’s home has been deemed unsuitable for a wet room or stairlift, meaning he has been forced to live in the family’s front room while an alternative property is found by Bury Council.

People in and around Bury have raised thousands of pounds to help the youngster since the accident.

To make a donation, go to


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