Bunbury Olympian Beth Tweddle is hoping to find out next week when she can be discharged from hospital in Austria as she recovers from fracturing her neck during training for Channel 4 reality show The Jump.
The former Chester Queen’s School student, 30, had to undergo surgery after fracturing two vertebrae in a fall, making her one of five participants in the show’s celebrity line-up to sustain an injury.
But speaking from her hospital bed, the sporting legend said today (Saturday, February 13): “The medical staff here in Austria have been fantastic and I couldn’t have wished for better people to be around me at this time.
“I’ve started to feel a lot better in the past 24 hours and I’ve begun walking by myself. It’s still a case of taking one day at a time, but I’m setting myself goals and I’m determined to be up and about as soon as I can.
“The doctors are happy with my progress and next week we will have a better idea of when I can be discharged from hospital.
“Thank you to everyone that has sent me get well messages. My Mum and Dad have been reading them to me and, one day, I’ll be able to reply to you all, it really has meant a lot to me, so thank you.”
With calls for The Jump to be axed, Channel 4 said production company TwoFour has been ordered to reassess procedures due to the number of casualties this year.
A Channel 4 spokeswoman said: “The Jump is now in its third series and since launch 46 celebrities have taken part successfully.
“Though it is a new course, the events have been designed to be no more difficult than in previous years and all contributors have undertaken a rigorous training programme to prepare them for the show.
“All winter sports carry some element of risk but in light of the number of injuries this year, Channel 4 has asked the producers to review safety procedures again to further reduce the prospect of accident.”
Doctors took a piece of bone from Beth’s hip to fuse the two fractured vertebrae, before pinning them together.
Beth’s parents Ann and Jerry Tweddle have said they are ‘very grateful’ that the operation was a success.
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At the moment, episode three of The Jump is still scheduled to air tomorrow (Sunday, February 14) at 7.30pm on Channel 4 despite athlete Linford Christie becoming the fifth contestant to withdraw due to injury.