A LITTLE boy stole the show and helped raise more than £10,000 at a charity golf tournament

Eighteen-month-old Loui Herriott Heath, who suffers from Treacher Collins Syndrome, joined 80 keen golfers and philanthropists at the eighth Argus Appeal Charity Golf Tournament at the East Brighton Golf Club.

The event, organised by Phil Graves of Graves Jenkins assisted by Chris Weatherstone of Weatherstone Properties raised a five-figure sum for charities including The Argus Appeal, Rockinghorse, Cystic Fibrosis charities, Mouth Cancer Action Project and Birdies 4 Children.

Loui's parents Luke Heath and Karly Herriot were thrilled when their young son, who had facial deformities but can already sign 61 words, was adopted as an unofficial mascot among the players. He spent the afternoon giving high-fives.

A shotgun start began at 1.30pm and players managed to make their way back to the clubhouse by 4.30pm for speeches and a raffle shortly before the heavens opened.

A pedometer challenge organised by Christina Chatfield of Dental Spa raised £400 and a "beat the pro" putting competition added a further £240.

Veteran broadcaster and Argus Appeal patron Nick Owen joined Mr Graves and Argus editor Mike Gilson to make presentations to the winning golf teams and those who had won 'nearest the pin' competitions.

Loui's parents have raised £38,000 to take him to America for a much-needed operation unavailable in this country, and The Argus Appeal decided to put £1,000 of the money it received from the day towards his long-term care.

His mother Karly said: "We'd like to thank everyone who attended the golf event and the Argus Appeal for supporting us and for the wonderful way everyone looked after us."

Phil Graves said: "It proved to be a marvellous day with some significant fundraising.

"I cannot thank the generous participants enough and let's hope we can roll this into next years event.

"The star of the show was little Loui who humbled everyone with his presence at the evening presentation. So much so that we have since heard from a handful of anonymous benefactors who would like to help him.

"The enormous amount of work involved in bringing the tournament together was all very worthwhile."