A TODDLER battling serious heart and lung problems nearly died just days after winning a national award.

Carson Hartley’s fight-ing spirit touched people in East Lancashire after he survived a danger-ously premature birth and numerous heart attacks.

His parents Kirsty Harris and Damian Hartley, from Oswaldtwistle, were thrilled on hearing that the two-year-old had won the national Tommy’s Champion Children award, which recognises prematurely born youngsters who have battled to overcome difficult conditions.

However their joy turned to panic last Wednesday as Carson's left lung collapsed and the right had an infection.

Doctors worked to save his life at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital where he receives specialist care on the day he been due to leave to go home for the first time.

Kirsty said: “I had been waiting for him at home when I got the call about his condition. If the nurses had mangaged to get as far as the taxi, he wouldn’t have survived.”

Carson was born with blue baby syndrome, a hole in his heart and had to battle through numer-ous life-saving operations, which have destroyed his voicebox, meaning he will never speak.

Kirsty said: “He had been doing so well lately that we almost forgot how poorly he is.

“If you take the tubes away he’s like any other toddler.

Doctors are keeping a close eye on him until they can be sure his condition is stable. The family, who recently moved to Liverpool to be closer to Alder Hey, hope he can be home for Christmas.

Kirsty added: “We had been thrilled to hear about the award, after all we’ve been through.

“The ceremony is in March in London and we are trying to figure out how we can go. We’ll have to find the money to bring a carer with us too.”