A mum found her two-year-old boy had cancer when she noticed a slight squint in one of his eyes.

Amy Waddle from Crawley said the squint in Teddy’s right eye seemed to happen when he was concentrating on something.

Amy, 32, and her partner Brian Cossins, 45, first noticed this last summer.

“We had an appointment with the health visitor in July anyway and she noticed the squint too and referred us to the hospital,” said Amy.

There then followed a series of hospital visits to see different doctors. Each time Teddy became scared and distressed at all the examinations he had to have.

“During this time, I noticed the eye changing,” said Amy. “There was a bit of a glow to it in certain lights and it changed from bright blue to a much darker colour.

“I couldn’t help Googling and before the doctors formally diagnosed it, I just knew it was retinoblastoma. Call it mother’s instinct, but I just knew. And when we saw the doctor, I could see in his face, it was going to be bad news.

“By chance, on the day we were at East Surrey Hospital, there was a retinoblastoma surgeon there. We were taken into a room and told it was a grade E tumour and that his eye would have to be removed.

“I think they were expecting me to collapse into tears but I had already done a lot of crying. I don’t know how many times I dreamt of his funeral. It was a really awful time. So by the time they told us he had cancer, I was ready for it.

“The doctor said: ‘We’re going to have to take his eye but I am certain we can save his life’.

“The only time Teddy ever complained about his eye hurting was the day before it was removed.”

As traumatic as that was, Teddy did not need chemotherapy or any further treatment.

Further tests also showed that there was no genetic link so Teddy’s other eye was safe and his nine-month-old brother Parker was not at risk.

Teddy has to have his prosthetic eye changed every three months while he grows.

“He takes it out all the time!” said Amy.

“He’s bright – he knows all his numbers and colours – and he’s a very happy little boy. He’s not good on stairs – he has trouble with depth perception but that will improve with time.”

Teddy has now been recognised for his bravery with a special national award - a Cancer Research UK for Children and Young People Star Award.

Every child nominated for a star receives the accolade.

A spokesman for the charity said: “There is no judging panel because the charity believes every child diagnosed with cancer deserves special recognition.”

As well as a star-shaped trophy, Teddy received a £50 TK Maxx gift card, t-shirt and a certificate. His brother Parker, who is nine months old, received a certificate too. 

“Teddy was so proud when he got his star award – he absolutely loves it and loves to play with it and tell me it’s his star,” added Amy.