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Lowestoft youngster ‘over the moon’ after receiving handwritten letter from his TV hero David Attenborough

PUBLISHED: 10:45 20 March 2017 | UPDATED: 20:16 20 March 2017

After watching a television wildlife documentary by his favourite broadcaster, Sir David Attenborough, 10-year-old Ashton Pilkington felt inspired to write to the man behind the show to tell him how much he had enjoyed it.

But when the Lowestoft schoolboy, who has a passion for wildlife and nature, wrote to the veteran broadcaster and naturalist thanking him “for making wonderful programmes” he never expected a reply.

However, the youngster was “over the moon” when, within a week of sending the letter to his hero, a handwritten envelope from the much-loved 90-year-old naturalist came through the Pilkington family’s letterbox at their home in Long Road.

The envelope contained a personal message from Sir David, who is best known for wildlife documentaries such as The Blue Planet and Life on Earth, thanking Ashton for writing to him as well as adding: “I am so glad you enjoy my programmes.”

Ashton, who is a pupil at Grove Primary School in Carlton Colville near Lowestoft, said: “I felt lucky to receive a letter from him as I didn’t think he would write back.

“I like that the programmes have lots of facts and that I learn lots from watching them.

“Some of my friends thought it was fake, others said I was very lucky and how nice it was of him to write back - I want to be the next David Attenborough.”

Adam Pilkington, Ashton’s father, said: “I had read that David Attenborough often replies to letters and when I told Ashton he went straight to his room and started writing him a letter.

“Ashton has always loved wildlife and animals, therefore has always been fascinated by all of David Attenborough’s programmes especially Life and Planet Earth.

“I was shocked when the letter arrived partly due to how quickly he responded, but mainly due to the fact it was handwritten and not typed and just signed by him.

“Ashton was so impressed we had to frame it – he is over the moon.”

Do you have a Lowestoft story? Contact reporter Simon Ward on telephone number 01502 525 832 or email: simon.ward@archant.co.uk.

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