A FIVE-YEAR-OLD boy who defied all the odds after his parents were told he had no chance of survival has won an award for his strength.

Joshua Fallon was born at 30 weeks after his mum Rebecca, who was expecting twins, was rushed into surgery for an emergency c-section.

Tragically, Joshua’s twin brother Jacob did not survive the complications of birth, and Joshua was in such a critical condition with a rare combination of illnesses that doctors told his parents he had a very low chance of survival.

But after five months in neonatal care at Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital, Joshua and his family were finally allowed back to their Blackburn home.

Mrs Fallon said: “Joshua is the only recorded case of a person in the world to be born with his combination of conditions.

“He had a seriously rare skin disease called congenital erosive vesicular dermatitis, which essentially means parts of his skin were eroding.

“He was also born with oesophageal atresia, which is a birth defect that affected his ability to swallow anything. We were told by many doctors that they didn’t know if there was anything they could do, but we felt he was getting better.”

Joshua has since had a normal upbringing – even gaining a 100% attendance rate in his first year of classes at Griffin Park Primary School.

Support worker Mrs Fallon added: “It is a very bittersweet feeling we have been dealing with over the past five years. We are extremely lucky to have a now fit and healthy young boy who loves his monster trucks and playing with his friends, but at the same time, birthdays and events can be difficult without Jacob.”

Blackburn Rovers fan Joshua will now have a once-in-a-lifetime chance to travel down to London for an awards ceremony and VIP shopping trip after his dad James entered him in to the Paw Patrol Little Heroes Awards – where he was selected for an award for his strength. This makes Joshua just one of eight children across the country to have been chosen for an award.

Mr Fallon said: “Our little hero has faced a number of challenges since he was born and very sadly, we lost his twin brother at birth and Joshua was born with a number of serious health conditions. He still faces challenges, of course, but is the strongest person we know and we are so proud of him.”

In addition to such a fun-packed weekend, all winners will also receive tickets to Nickelodeon Land. Speaking about finding out Joshua was a winner, Mrs Fallon said: “It was a lovely moment, we are both so proud of him.

“He has come through so much and he deserves to be recognised for his strength.”