A Broughton four-year-old kicked Halloween celebrations into touch and instead of trick or treating raised funds for Hope House Children’s Hospices instead.

Little martial arts star Lexi Byrne took part in a kickathon clocking up 1,000 karate kicks to raise more than £400 for the charity, which is made up of the Ty Gobaith facility at Groesynydd, Conwy and its Morda, Oswestry-based sister hospice.

Lexi, a member of Saltney’s Family Martial Arts Centre, was joined by adults and other children from the centre in raising more than £1,000, once all money is in, which will help the charity continue to support children and families when they need help the most.

Lexi, a reception pupil at Broughton Infants School, says she loves going to the Family Martial Arts Centre and was really happy to raise funds for Hope House.

She said: “I really like it and wanted to get some money to help poorly children. My dad and mum have helped me and I like learning skills with my trainer.

“I didn’t mind missing Halloween it was more fun doing the kicks for the children who need help. It was hard though!”

Lexi’s proud mum, Lucy Byrne, says her daughter loves going to the Family Martial Arts Centre and adores her trainer, Ailene Whitehead.

She said: “Lexi started in February and really enjoys it. She’s already passed from being a white belt, a yellow belt and is now a green and black belt. She has always been interested in martial arts and has so much energy.

“She loves the physical side and we enjoy the fact she’s active, learning new skills and will hopefully be able to protect herself in the years ahead.

“The centre is very relaxed and she enjoys working with her dad. It’s not just about martial arts though, her Little Leader group also have a talk during every session. She is taught respect, manners, healthy eating and lots of other life skills. It’s wonderful.”

She added: “Completing 1,000 martial art kicks is tiring but she was determined to do it and raise what she could for Hope House.”

Lexi’s dad, Jamie, said: “It’s a very relaxed club and she has made a lot of friends. We are delighted she has raised more than £400 which is fantastic.

“Hope House is a wonderful charity and we are so pleased to be able to help raise some money that we know will be put to good use.”

Instructor and Family Martial Arts Centre manager Ailene Whitehead says Lexi was the youngest member to tackle the kickathon, which she completed in 45 minutes.

She said: “One of our members has a cousin who is currently been helped by Hope House and he suggested we try and raise some money through this year’s kickathon.

“Lexi is a little star. She’s learning mixed martial arts, a bit of jujitsu, Thai boxing and kick boxing plus life skill lessons. We talk about things such as nutrition, staying safe, listening, perseverance, honesty and being respectful to parents."

Hope House Children’s Hospices area fundraiser Hannah Robinson said: “Lexi is amazing and clearly works very hard at her martial art skills. We are so grateful to Lexi and all the members for raising funds for us.

“It’s vital we continue to raise funds to support local children and families when they need us most. No one should suffer the death of a child alone.

“Sadly, three local children die each week, and currently Hope House can only afford to help one of these families. We are committed to changing this.”