A WOMAN who was told she wouldn’t live past the age of 18 has been named as the 9th most influential disabled person in Britain.

Lucy Watts, of Thundersley, turned 26 last week, a huge achievement considering ten years ago she had developed multi-organ failure and was bed-bound.

The inspirational woman has a life-shortening condition which is a rare neuromuscular disease – and means she has 24 hour care and is hooked up to intravenous drips 21 hours-a-day, as well as relying on assistance dog Molly.

But Lucy has refused to let that stop her, becoming an MBE in 2016, and receiving an honorary masters degree from the Open University last year.

She is also a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.

Her work takes many forms, including using social media and her website Lucy’s Light, to inspire other patients to make their lives count.

Lucy said: “I couldn’t believe it. ‘Little old me’ – how can it be? I am delighted, obviously, but a little bit awestruck as to how I’ve made it to the top ten.

“Things like this don’t happen to people like me. Part of me feels a bit like a fraud in the top ten with such people as my hero, Baroness Jane Campbell, and Lee Ridley and all the others in the top ten – heck I am still dumbfounded at how I’ve made it on the list at all.

“I look at people and always think they’re doing so much and are far more worthy than I am. However, I do appreciate this incredible honour and feel just a little bit proud.”

The majority of her work revolves around healthcare, palliative care and disabilities, both in the UK and international. She is a member of the NHS assembly, the NHS England strategic co-production group and the end of life commissioning steering group, amongst other committees nationally.

Lucy recently delivered live talks, screened online in real time to improve patient experience and staff training throughout the NHS.

Lucy added: “I hope I can inspire the next generation of disabled young people and not let others’ narrow minds limit their goals, dreams and aspirations. There’s a life beyond illness, even terminal illness, and there is no limits to our potential. Shoot for the moon – regardless of the outcome, you’ll land among the stars.” Number one was Baroness Jane Campbell.