A little girl who lost all four limbs after contracting a deadly strain of meningitis is settling into her first days at school – and she’s doing it in style.
Four-year-old Harmonie-Rose Allen, from Bath, has new prosthetic legs designed for her by the team at Dorset Orthopaedic, one of the country’s leading independent prosthetic clinics.
Harmonie-Rose contracted the illness aged just ten months, and in order to save her life, surgeons had to amputate her arms above the elbow, and her legs at the knee.
After a huge fundraising effort run online by her family, Harmonie-Rose was able to get new ‘pin-lock’ sockets provided by Dorset Orthopaedic’s southern clinic in Ringwood, to help improve her walking.
The new legs, which gave her a much more comfortable fit than her first prostheses, allowed Harmonie-Rose to take her first independent steps less than a year ago. Now she’s grown and ready for her first day in class, she has a new set of legs, which have lockable knee joints connected to purple sockets adorned with her favourite cartoon character, Vampirina. The lockable knee joints mean she can have her knees bent when sitting at a table, unlike previously when her feet would hit the underside.
Gillian Burrage, Harmonie-Rose’s prosthetist, said: “Harmonie-Rose is an amazing little girl with tons of spirit and determination, and she’s a delight to work with. We’re thrilled she loves her new legs as much as she does, and we wish her all the best as she starts her school life.”
Despite her disabilities, Harmonie-Rose lives an action-packed life and before starting school went on a holiday with her family, riding her scooter, handling snakes, and even surfing. She also loves singing, dancing painting and drawing and swimming, where she has recently collected her level 5 Rockhopper proficiency award.
Mum Freya Hall said: “Harmonie-Rose was adamant she wanted purple legs and that they should have Vampirina on them, and she absolutely loves them! She has been so excited to start school and is looking forward to making new friends, drawing, and being with her new teachers.”