UPDATED: Crowdfunding page set up to help Haverhill teacher with a life-changing injury

Steve Powter as Rene in the Centre Stage Company's March 2017 production. Allo Allo. Picture: Andy Mayes/Idyllic Imagery
Steve Powter as Rene in the Centre Stage Company's March 2017 production. Allo Allo. Picture: Andy Mayes/Idyllic Imagery

An uncertain future lies ahead for a well-known drama teacher from Haverhill after he suffered a life-changing spinal injury.

Just days before he turned 38 in early October, Steve Powter was struck down by what has since been diagnosed as a disc that moved and crushed his spinal cord.

He may never be able to walk unaided again and has now had to put his house on the market and sell his car as he faces the possibility of having to use a wheelchair for the rest of his life.

Steve, who taught drama for more than a decade at Castle Manor Academy until leaving in September 2016 and has starred in many productions with Haverhill’s Centre Stage Company, said: “It’s so mind blowing. I honestly don’t think I have taken it all in despite it being six weeks ago.

“I’m slightly burying my head in the sand and focusing on small practical things.

“The problem with that is that so much emotional investment goes into small things and as soon as there’s a small setback it takes on a massively disproportionate significance.

“I know it’s going to be hard. I don’t know where I’m going to live for example, I need Nick Knowles to build me a nice house!”

Steve is currently in Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge and faces up to year of hospitalisation.

A funding page has been set up by a friend of Steve’s to raise the £1,800 needed to buy him a specialist wheelchair.

Donate at his JustGiving page.

As for the future, Steve said: “The prognosis doesn’t really exist unfortunately, with spinal injuries it’s pretty impossible to predict what recovery will or won’t be made.

“Personally I’ve inferred from reactions from various doctors and physios etc that it’s pretty likely that I will be dependent on a wheelchair for the rest of my life.

“Dealing with something life changing like this is difficult.

“I’m trying to distract myself by arranging practical things but it is so hard having to rely on others and not being able to do things myself.

“The page was a real help while it was building up as it was great to see all the comments and have new people get in touch from the past.”