NEIGHBOURS, family and friends came together to wish a little girl who has had a terrible 18 months the happiest birthday during lockdown.

To simply say Megan Glanister from Newton-le-Willows has had a difficult past year and a half is an understatement.

Her dad Ian Glanister died in a motorbike crash in March 2019, and her little sister Gracie, who is only three, has been diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes.

St Helens Star:

Megan with little sister Gracie

But positive Megan is always looking forward, and her mum Joanne, 32, says she was more understanding than most when her 11th birthday plans were cancelled due to the coronavirus lockdown.

Joanne Nye, Megan’s mum, said: “Megan is an inspiration to me, she has been through more than some people do in their whole lives and she deserved a special birthday for how well she is coping.

St Helens Star:

Megan with Gracie, mum Joanne and stepdad Gareth

“Her dad Ian died a year ago, that has been so hard for Megan, now Gracie her little sister has been diagnosed with type one diabetes and she does everything she can to help me and her stepdad Gareth with her.

“We had booked for her to see Little Mix at Saints for a special belated birthday treat because she loves them so much and to see family and friends on her actual birthday which was on Tuesday, May 5.

“But due to coronavirus lockdown this concert has been cancelled and she's not been able to see her grandparents, both my parents and Ian's, which has been really hard for her as she is close to them.

"She is so understanding though and she just accepted that all of this couldn't happen, bless her, we just knew we had to find a way to still make it special for her.

“Family and friends were planning on coming round and singing happy birthday to her at a safe distance anyway, but then a neighbour Emily got in touch with other neighbours in our area and so many people came out to sing happy birthday to her.

St Helens Star:

Megan, right, with her dad Ian who died in March 2019 and her other little sister Jennifer

“It was total surprise for her, she thought someone in the family had left her something on the doorstep and all of a sudden the street was full of so many lovely people singing happy birthday.

“Some even got her cards and gifts, which they so didn’t need to do and just made it even more special.

“Afterwards she said ‘mum I feel famous, that was so good. But there was one person missing’.

“There’s nothing I can do to take away her pain from this past year and a half, but our amazing family, friends and neighbours really helped to brighten her birthday and make it a special one, even in lockdown.

“Thank you to everyone who came out, it seems like a little thing but it meant the world to us.”