YEP Says, October 6: Courageous Lizzy is an inspiration as she starts her new life

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...and a stark reminder of how we used to live

BORN with “club foot” in both feet, Lizzy Holmes has suffered chronic pain and endured no fewer than 36 operations – the first when she was just 10 weeks old.

Now, at the age of 24, she is starting a new chapter in her life after choosing to have both her legs amputated below the knee.

For many that would be something too awful to even contemplate – but for Lizzy it is nothing short of a release.

There can be no question that it is a courageous decision. But given her history, it’s clear that it is also the correct one.

Lizzy may never be completely free of discomfort but no longer does she have to endure the chronic pain that came with her condition.

Doctors say she is making remarkable progress and Lizzy herself says she feels “amazing, relieved and free”.

And there is no question of her surgery holding her back. She has recently become a model and is one of only a few double amputee models in Britain.

She is confident that her youth and fitness will help her quickly adapt to her new life and vows that her disability won’t stop her from doing anything.

She is now studying with the Open University to become a primary school teacher and will undoubtedly be an inspiration to all the children she teaches in the years to come. We wish her every success.

A stark reminder of how we used to live

SOMETIMES it’s easy to forget how far we have come – both as a society and as a city.

A new photographic exhibition might just remind us. Nick Hedges took pictures of the harsh reality of life on the back streets of Leeds and other northern cities in the late 1960s and early 1970s.

His striking images show a world that is thankfully very different from life as we know it today. But that does not mean there is room for complacency.

The fact that the exhibition was commissioned by housing charity Shelter is a reminder that there are still large numbers living in poor housing conditions –and that there is still a great deal of work to be done.

First buses.

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