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Home   Sittingbourne   News   Article

Video: Touching moment Murston girl Sophie Ryback, three, with rare brain condition meets Peppa Pig at Paultons Park in New Forest

04 June 2014
by Hayley Robinson

A video of a young Kent girl with a rare brain condition smiling as she realises she is about to meet Peppa Pig has become an internet hit.

More than 8,000 people from across the world have viewed the heartwarming footage of Sophie Ryback as she comes face-to-face with the pre-school children's cartoon character.

Her parents Michelle, 32, and 37-year-old Michael, of Lansdown Road, Murston, decided to film their daughter's reaction as she arrived at Paultons Park in the New Forest, Hampshire.

The moment little Sophie Ryback comes face-to-face with Peppa Pig

The moment little Sophie Ryback comes face-to-face with Peppa Pig

They were treated to the day at Peppa Pig World by the charity Polymicrogyria Family Support UK, which was set up to help families of children with the brain malformation.

The three-year-old was diagnosed with the condition that affects the right side of her brain when she was 18-months-old.

As a result, her head is the size of a four-month old, she has severe global development delay, is unable to talk, regularly suffers from night-time seizures and has cerebral palsy which affects the left side of her body.

Video: Murston youngster Sophie Ryback at Peppa Pig World

It is thought around one in 2,500 babies suffer from it, although many cases go undiagnosed.

Mrs Ryback, who is also mother to six-year-old Oliver, said: "I contacted Peppa Pig World and asked if they wanted to see it.

"They then asked if they could put it on their Facebook page so I said 'yes'. I just wanted them to see it because it was so lovely."

Sittingbourne girl Sophie Ryback at home with her Peppa Pig toys

Sittingbourne girl Sophie Ryback at home with her Peppa Pig toys

She added: "We're surprised by the response. It's overwhelming and there's been some lovely comments.

"Some have come from people in Saudi Arabia, New Zealand and Canada.

"Sophie is a quite a character. She can't talk, but she makes the room light up wherever she goes."

Sophie Ryback, three, and her father Michael test out one of the park’s rides

Sophie Ryback, three, and her father Michael test out one of the park’s rides

Delighted Sophie Ryback with her six-year-old brother Oliver at Peppa Pig World

Delighted Sophie Ryback with her six-year-old brother Oliver at Peppa Pig World

Sophie Ryback was diagnosed with the brain malformation Polymicrogyria when she was 18 months

Sophie Ryback was diagnosed with the brain malformation Polymicrogyria when she was 18 months

Mrs Ryback said: "Doctors have told us they don't know what the future holds for her.

"The worst case scenario is that her seizures get more severe and uncontrollable.

"She can't speak and every time she has a fit she loses everything she has learned.

"But she keeps defying doctors. Every time they say she can't do something, she proves them wrong - that's why they can't tell us what will happen in the long term."

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