Ex-rugby star Rob Burrow to read CBeebies Bedtime Story using special technology

Former rugby league player Rob Burrow, who uses a computer to talk after being diagnosed with motor neurone disease, will make history when he reads a CBeebies Bedtime Story using special technology.

The ex-Leeds Rhino and Great Britain scrum-half, 40, will read Tom Percival’s Tilda Tries Again – about a girl who suddenly finds her world changed and things that were once easy more challenging – on International Day of Persons with Disabilities.

The inspirational tale tells how Tilda finds a new way to approach her problems – and believe in herself.

The former rugby league player has motor neurone disease
The former rugby league player has motor neurone disease (BBC handout/PA)

It will be the first time on the BBC children’s show a story is read using the special eye-controlled gear, which is able to recreate a version of Burrow’s Yorkshire accent.

The sports star, diagnosed in 2019, said: “I used to love reading to my own children as part of their bedtime routine. I was so excited and honoured to be given the opportunity to read a CBeebies Bedtime Story.

“Reading and literacy are so important. It doesn’t matter what your disability is, reading is accessible to everyone.

“Anyone can enjoy reading and develop a love of books and bedtime stories, just like me and my family.”

Investitures at Windsor Castle
Former rugby league player Rob Burrow and his wife Lindsey (Steve Parsons/PA)

Burrow was accompanied into the CBeebies studio by his wife Lindsey and two of the pair’s children, Maya, seven, and Jackson, three.

The youngsters directed their father from the TV gallery, helped count down and shouted “action” when the cameras started rolling.

Burrow will follow in the footsteps of England and Tottenham striker Harry Kane, who appeared on the popular show in October to read a story about overcoming fear and finding one’s inner lion through self-belief.

Singer Harry Styles, Captain America star Chris Evans, Foo Fighters frontman Dave Grohl and British actor Tom Hiddleston have also appeared on CBeebies Bedtime Stories.

Tilda Tries Again will be read by Burrow on CBeebies Bedtime Story at 6.50pm on Saturday December 3.