THE family of a man left paralysed after a holiday waterside accident has praised the community which has raised £90,000 to help him.

David Briffaut, 23, from Benfleet broke his neck in two places while on a slide at Aqualandia Waterpark, in Benidorm, Spain, on July 8.

Braintree and Witham Times:

Moments before tragedy - David, left

He is currently facing a three-month wait for a place at the London Spinal Injuries Unit, in Stanmore.

His uncle, Mark Pooley, said: “He is getting stronger. He’s still having support with his breathing and he’s working with physiotherapy continually. We are hoping to get him into the Stanmore spinal injuries trauma unit.

“There’s a three month wait because there aren’t many centres like that. We are talking about the NHS and this is a specialist unit.

“David has had fantastic care though. He is speaking more now through his tracheotomy. He has good days and bad days as we all do.

“It’s been very hard for him. Life goes on but its pretty tough and we are all trying hard to keep it together.”

A Just Giving page was set up in the aftermath of the accident which occurred while Mr Briffaut was on holiday with his girlfriend Penny Bristow, 22, to celebrate her graduation.

Mr Pooley added: “In total we’ve raised about £90,000 so far. Everyone in the local community and business have done everything they can to help.

“It’s unbelievable how the community has come together.”

The money will be used to fund Mr Briffaut’s ongoing care, which is likely to be considerable, and to adapt his home to his needs.

Mr Briffaut is a highly regarded greens keeper at Boyce Hill Golf Club. The club is holding a benefit golf day on September 12 from 11am to 5pm.

To donate to David Briffaut’s fund, visit the Just Giving page at