A YOUNG Basingstoke girl had her locks lopped off to help a charity which makes wigs for youngsters battling cancer.

Eleven-year-old Joanna Chiverton, of Cowslip Bank, Lychpit, had her waist-length blonde hair cut at The Topiary Salon, in Old Basing, at the start of August.

Last week she surprised her friends with the new style on her first day at Bishop Challoner Catholic Secondary School. “For my close friends, it was quite a big change to see,” said Joanna. “But I haven’t changed in any way – it is only hair.”

The youngster donated her locks to The Little Princess Trust. The charity will use seven-inch-long pigtails made from Joanna’s hair to create real wigs for children undergoing cancer treatment, or suffering from alopecia.

Joanna said she was inspired by a family friend to have the big cut for the charity.

“She used to have hair down to her waist,” said Joanna. “She donated it to the same charity I have, and I thought that was just a really good nice thing to do.”

Mum Maggie said she had persuaded her daughter to keep her hair long for years, but came round after Joanna told her of the good cause.

She said: “I have to say now that she looks absolutely stunning, and looks better with short hair than long. She is a very loving caring child, so the fact she wanted to do this to help other people was lovely, and I am very proud of her.”