Cabaret fundraising will help generous Daniel get the most out of life

Daniel Maccoll and his mum Angie Weller.Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Daniel Maccoll and his mum Angie Weller.Picture: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant

He was once the life and soul of the party, a charismatic bar and restaurant manager and performer.

Daniel Maccoll before he was diangosed with motor neuron disease. Photo: Daniel Maccoll

Daniel Maccoll before he was diangosed with motor neuron disease. Photo: Daniel Maccoll - Credit: Daniel Maccoll

But after being diagnosed with motor neurone disease (MND), life completely changed for 33-year-old Daniel Maccoll, to the point where he can now no longer do anything for himself and needs round-the-clock care.

It started in 2012 when Mr Maccoll had gone out to live in Cyprus, where he ran a bar with his mother, Angie Weller.

He developed muscle weakness and extreme fatigue, and after having a stroke while swimming in the sea, he lost his speech.

'I was slurring, everyone thought I was drunk all the time,' said Mr Maccoll, who speaks with the aid of a machine he controls with head movements.


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'I started getting tired, I didn't know what was happening. I wanted to come back to the UK which I did in 2012.'

Mr Maccoll, who grew up in Norwich, went through 18 gruelling months of tests, and eventually was diagnosed with MND in 2013.

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But over the following few months, his condition deteriorated and doctors told him he may only have six months to live.

'My arms were first to go,' he said. 'And I lost my grip in 2013. Then I started losing my balance a couple of times.'

With support from his family Mr Maccoll was able to secure a flat which was adapted for his needs, and through fundraising got a mobility scooter he called his Ferrari.

'With that, I got my independence back for about a year,' he said.

But when he was unable to get into his mother's car one day for a trip out, Mr Maccoll's ability to get around was reduced again, and his condition continued to deteriorate.

'In the last six months I can no longer move my legs, I can't eat and my speech has gone,' he said. 'It's scary being told you have six months to live, seeing your family be strong. But I was told that in 2013 and I'm still going strong.'

Aware that there is no cure for MND in this country, Mr Maccoll has dedicated himself to raising awareness and funds for the MND Association, as well as Priscilla Bacon Lodge in Norwich where he receives treatment.

In the past, events have included a static bike ride and a marshmallow challenge.

The latter, where people had to put marshmallows in their mouth and then try to say a tongue twister, was designed to show how frustrating it is to speak when you have MND.

But now, Ms Weller has said it is time for Mr Maccoll to benefit and she is raising money to make changes to his flat and give him some respite care.

'He's always giving to everyone else, never thinking about himself,' the 49-year-old said.

So she has organised a cabaret and auction night, on November 20, with money from ticket sales going to the appeal.

'For Danny it's not about the money though,' said Ms Weller,a mother-of-three. 'He just wants everyone to have a really, really good night.'

Mr Maccoll added: 'If I can raise money and stop someone else going through this I will be happy.'

A Night for DaniBoi will be on Sunday, November 20 at the Canary Social Club, Thorpe Road. Tickets are £8 for adults, and £5 for children in advance, or £10 on the door. Doors open at 6pm for a 6.30pm start. For tickets, more information, to make a donation of money or auction item, call Ms Weller on 07778 611338.

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