A LITTLE girl from Alderholt who has been fed through a tube for the first ten years of her life has now started to eat.

Three years ago The Forest Journal reported on the desperate plight of Tia-Mae McCarthy, who was born with a large gap in her oesophagus.

Following groundbreaking treatment an Austrian surgery corrected the problem but Tia-Mae has still never been able to eat or drink and is fed overnight through a tube in her stomach.

However just before Christmas her mum Sue McCarthy, of Daggons, offered her some yoghurt and was amazed when she accepted.

Now Tia-Mae has soup for lunch, followed by custard or ice cream and the same again for dinner. She also eats mousse, custard and semolina.

At night she is still fed nutrients through a tube, but her mum hopes that in time she will be eating like all her friends.

Mum Sue said: “I can’t believe that just before Christmas all she was eating was a few mouthfuls of yoghurt and now we have got this long list of things that she will sit down and happily eat.

“I never thought it would happen.”