Claudia Winkleman pays tribute to NHS nurses who treated daughter’s burns

Strictly Come Dancing presenter Claudia Winkleman has paid tribute to nurses who helped her daughter Mathilda when she was badly burned in a Halloween accident.

Mathilda, then eight, was trick or treating six years ago when she brushed against a candle and her witch's costume went up in flames, severely injuring her leg.

Claudia, 48, said: "There have been moments in my life, the most terrifying, the most confusing, the most discombobulating – that have led me to believe that the greatest people who walk the earth are nurses.

"They are kind, they are clever, they work incredibly hard, they are there to save us, or to help us through it when saving is simply not possible.

"They hold your hand when your child is going in for an operation, they hold your hand when the surgeon says there's bad news, they hold your hand when the doctor says the medication isn't working."

In her new book, Quite, the mum-of-three has dedicated a whole chapter to NHS nurses, who "see you at your most vulnerable and are simply there to help".

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Mathilda spent a month recovering in hospital after the accident, and Claudia can no longer enjoy Halloween ­because "it turned out our screams were real".

On her podcast How Did We Get Here? Claudia revealed that flashbacks of the horrific night hit her "like a tsunami," adding: "it's so enormous you think you're going to drown."

Their neighbour, Jamie Pilton, was left with second-degree burns after he bravely attempted to tackle the blaze with his bare hands.

Speaking about the incident, Jamie has previously said: "It was like a potential horror film in front of me.

"This material just keeps reigniting and re-burning. And it is sticky, so it melts on the skin. It was horrific."

Claudia was left horrified when she initially realised that children's nightwear was protected under law to have a certain level of fire resistance.

However, cheap costumes were classed as "toys" and therefore were not regulated in the same way.

Just one year after Mathilda's accident, the then-Chancellor George Osborne ordered a review of the law as EU regulations classed costumes as toys and not as clothing – which is held to higher standards.

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