A KILCREGGAN gran has thanked a group of rock painters for bringing a smile to her grandson's face as he fights against leukaemia.

The Inverclyde Rocks group is making the most of the growing global craze for painting small rocks by decorating stones for young hospital patients.

William Young, who was diagnosed with stage four Burkitt lymphoma earlier this year, recently found a painted rock bearing the message 'I will be your rock' on one of the rare occasions he was allowed off the ward at the Royal Hospital for Children.

It was left by Shona Lewedon from the Inverclyde Rocks' counterparts in Ayrshire, who William's family have quickly become friends with.

Gail Young, William’s gran, said: “I can’t speak for anyone else, but it has made William very happy and he gets excited to leave the ward to look for rocks too.

“A lot of the members painted William a rock with the theme Star Wars as he's a big Star Wars fan.

"One member even did a rock of a stormtrooper with his name on it and took it to America and got pictures of it with the Star Wars characters, and someone from the shop gifted a lightsabre for him.”

The stone-hiding craze has also caught on with other children on the ward, who have begun painting stones for Whiteleys Retreat near Ayr, a new holiday facility for children with serious illnesses and their families.

“It certainly has kept us busy," Gail continued. "The days are long and out of William's 17 weeks on the ward, 11 of them were in source, meaning we could not leave the room. Shona provided us with some stones so we could paint and hide ourselves and she also got the ward involved in painting rocks for the retreat.

“All that from finding a rock. William was thrilled to bits and decided to keep the rock with him, so every time we leave the ward we look for rocks or hide them.

"That’s when we found the other rocks for the Inverclyde group and William was so excited.”