A dad has called for cycle helmets to be made compulsory after one saved the life of his son.

Cheam paperboy Thomas Dynan-Lewis suffered little more than cuts and bruises when he fell off his bike and banged his head against a car in Burdon Lane, Cheam at 7am on Thursday.

His Specialized helmet took the brunt of the impact as his head crashed against the Land Rover Defender meaning he could be given the all-clear after a quick check up at St Helier Hospital and is now recovering.

Thomas's helmet, however, was smashed and shows what could have happened to his head were he not wearing the £50 protective hat.

His dad, Michael Lewis, said; "The left side of the helmet where Thomas hit his head is completely smashed.

"He had a lump on his head underneath the size of a tangerine but he's been taking ibuprofen and the swelling has gone down.

"He's still a bit stiff but that could have been from playing rugby the day before!

"On a normal car it would have been bad, but because the Land Rover Defender is made of heavy-duty steel, if he wasn't wearing his helmet he could have cracked his skull.

"I think the helmet saved his life."

Mr Lewis said he and his wife Sarah Dynan have not always made Thomas wear a helmet but did after another member of the family had a cycle accident near Christmas. Now Mr Lewis thinks all riders should wear helmets.

He added: "I think it should be law, certainly. I know teenagers are worried about what their hair looks like but the alternative is not worth thinking about.

"Prior to Christmas he used to ride his BMX and things without a helmet and I was responsible for that. Now, though, we tell him he always has to wear his helmet and this just shows why."

It is not a legal requirement that cyclists wear helmets in the UK although it is advised.

Sutton Police are holding a cycle marking event where people will be able to get their bikes marked to deter thieves and get safety advice in Sutton town centre on February 19.