AN orphan who was facing an uncertain future after the death of both parents within six weeks is set for a happy Christmas after being taken in by his aunt and uncle.

Lewis Clough, 12, was devastated after his dad was killed in a road accident, just weeks after his mum died from cancer.

But now he's settling into a happy new life with his loving family and looking forward to a happier Christmas period than he ever dared imagine.

He's starting a new school and has asked for his thanks to be passed on to the hundreds of local people who were so moved by the double tragedy that struck his young life that they organised collections in his name.

Lewis is living with his aunt and uncle - Jayne and Terry Jackson - at their home in Elsecar. Jayne is his mum's sister and her house is one where he has stayed regularly and where, he says, he feels at home.

Jayne and Terry say they too want to thank all the people who have sent gift vouchers and presents to Lewis.

"Times are hard and money is tight and yet so many people have thought of Lewis and given to collections in his name," said Terry, 53.

"Lewis has already spent some of the vouchers and is playing with the games he was given and all three of us want people who gave to these collections to know how much we appreciate all their kindness and good wishes.

"It just shows that no matter how bad things get, there's always some kindness that can help make you feel better and the people of Barnsley really have been so very kind."

The couple's own grown up son Jamie has moved out of the family's two-bedroom house to make room for Lewis.

"We all knew how important it was to provide Lewis with love and stability," said Jayne, 49.

"We wanted to ensure he could grow up surrounded by his family and with special memories of his mum and dad.

"Just a few days ago I asked him how he was and he said he likes living here - that made me so happy."

Lewis's parents had separated two years ago.

His mum Manda Kay, from Lundwood, died from cancer aged 52 in September. Six weeks later his dad, 44-year-old Ian Clough, of Hoyle Mill, was killed as he drove to work on the night shift at Premdor in Darton.

So many people were upset at the thought of a 12-year-old losing both parents in such a short time that collections were launched in shops and businesses in Lundwood and Hoyle Mill and at Premdor where Ian had worked.