'I'll be okay' - Girl with Down syndrome brushes off abuse after Dad hits back at trolls

  • Video report by ITV News Correspondent Ivor Bennett

"What people say doesn't affect me at all. I'll be okay."

Those are the brave words of a teenage girl with Down syndrome who suffered some horrific online abuse after her dad posted a video of her to Twitter, but thanks to the support of strangers the pair have bounced back.

Despite a barrage of abuse from mostly faceless trolls which left 16-year-old Ella Markham and her dad, Neil, feeling "pretty rock bottom on Sunday evening", the pair have received some "unbelievable" support.

"We've had contact, particularly on Twitter where they're people you don't know, thousands and thousands of people have just flooded out with support," he said.

Ella was so excited about seeing Tottenham Hotspur for the first time in their new ground, she seemingly did not care her team had lost as she danced away to a band's music.

Mr Markham then posted the video of his daughter enjoying herself on Twitter.

However, when he did so, the last thing he expected was a barrage of abuse targeting Ella for having Down syndrome.

But Mr Markham, who was shocked to read hurtful messages after posting the video online, told ITV News the trolls "picked on the wrong girl this time".

In a bold move he posted his phone number and told trolls to contact him directly rather than hurl hurtful abuse at his 16-year-old daughter, and he thinks that move might have resulted in some changed minds.

"I've had messages where people have said to me 'I've used those words before, I won't use them again' and if one person does that then Ella's changed the world really," he said.

  • Watch Ella and Neil's appearance on ITV Lunchtime News:

Ella, who is proud of her dad for sticking up for her, said: "I don't like bullies, I do love my daddy."

She also had a message of support for one of her other biggest inspirations.

"Good luck Harry Kane, he's my hero. And come on your Spurs," she said.