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Surbiton girl with cystic fibrosis among world's best Irish dancers

A Surbiton schoolgirl with cystic fibrosis overcame the limits of her condition to compete at the World Irish Dancing Championships 2018 in Glasgow.

Issy Fairclough, 15, has to take antibiotics and nebuliser treatments every morning and night, do daily chest therapy, which takes an hour before school and a couple of hours every evening. But she saw off competition from most of the 199 other competitors in her age group – the top one per cent of competitors worldwide – making it to the final 50 to perform in front of a panel of adjudicators.

She has always been energetic, but at age seven she broke her leg during a trampolining class – and during treatment a nurse suggested she try Irish dancing. Within two years, Issy won the Southern England Regional Championships.

Exercise can have huge benefits for people with cystic fibrosis, which can often severely reduce quality of life.

Issy was rank 46 in the world at the championships.

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