A PLAYSCHEME for disabled youngsters has been thrown a lifeline after being cancelled amid a council cash crisis.

The Hyndburn Council scheme, at White Ash School, Oswaldtwistle, is designed to give disabled children something to do during the long summer holidays and to give parents a rest.

But the scheme was cancelled because of confusions over funding, involving Hyndburn Council and Lancashire County Council, and the need to make budget cuts in Hyndburn.

The council has revealed that money is being set aside to keep the scheme going. A decision still has to be made on whether it will be up and running for the summer.

A report to the council's cabinet recommended that the required budget of £6,400 was provided from a special action fund.

The news was welcomed by parent Pamela McCullagh, 29, of Sparth Road, Clayton-le-Moors. Pam is mum to 10-year-old Matthew Wilcock, who suffers from Angelman's Syndrome, leaving him with problems including learning difficulties and epilepsy.

Matthew has been going to the scheme for five years. Mrs McCullagh said: "It's fantastic news that it's going to be reinstated.

"I am grateful for everybody's work to put it all together and we have had fantastic support for it.

"I'm glad it's going to be reinstated, we just have to make sure it doesn't happen again. A lot of hard work went into sorting it out and just to see it taken away was heartbreaking."

But despite the cash being made available, decisions still need to be made on this year's scheme.

Staff are usually recruited from February, with everything in place by May.

The council report said: "In addition to a coordinator, supervisor and nurse, the scheme requires, on average, a ratio of one assistant per child.

"Therefore if the scheme is to go ahead, the number of children who can be accommodated, normally up to a maximum of 20, will be dependent on the number of assistants which can now be recruited."