Parents release final images of son dying from meningitis

The couple released the heartbreaking images to raise awareness of the disease. Credit: ITV News

Grieving parents have released photos showing their final moments with their son before he died from meningitis.

Claire and Mark Timmins lost seven-year-old son Mason to the disease in 2013 - only 24-hours after he told them he felt unwell.

They decided to release a heartbreaking images to raise awareness of the disease - increasing the already mounting pressure on the government to make the Meningitis B vaccine more widely available.

"I know it's a horrible thing to say but shock works, and it has caused a reaction and it is making people more aware and that's the response we wanted," Claire Timmins said.

She urged parents to be vigilant, adding that her son did not present for the classic red rash commonly associated with the virus.

The decision of Faye Burdett's family to show how meningitis claimed the life of their two-year-old sparked a public campaign for vaccinations for all children.

The Timmins have paid for their daughter Billie to be vaccinated privately but a surge in demand have meant stocks are running low.

A record 700,000 people have now signed a petition calling on the government to make the vaccination available to all children.

Mason Timmins was a lively and bubbly seven-year-old just days before the disease took hold. Credit: ITV News

But the boss of NHS England Simon Stevens told ITV News it should be down to a committee of experts to decide.

We have an expert body, the Joint Committee on Vaccinations and Immunisations that review the scientific evidence, and I think we should be guided by what the medical experts are telling us is the right answer in this case.

Simon Stevens, Chief Executive NHS England

At present, only children under 12-months old are able to have the vaccine free on the NHS.