Susan Cunliffe-Lister was handed an exact replica of the gold medal she lost during the inaugural Rome 1960 Games ©ParalympicsGB

Susan Cunliffe-Lister, one of Britain's first-ever Paralympic medallists, was handed an exact replica of the gold medal she lost during the inaugural Rome 1960 Games during a special British Paralympic Association (BPA) ceremony.

Cunliffe-Lister, who is the Baroness Masham of Ilton, is an iconic figure in British Paralympics, originally bursting on the scene in the Italian capital where she claimed three medals.

In addition to acquiring table tennis bronze in the women's doubles, she won silver in backstroke swimming and a gold in the breaststroke event.

However, her medal went missing when she dined near the Trevi Fountain to celebrate her success.

BPA chair Nick Webborn was recently made aware of the 87-year-old's story and commissioned for a replica to be created, which goldsmiths Ursae Ltd delivered upon.

The process of making the medal involved scanning the textures of the 3D-printed original before casting into silver and plated with gold.

"I would like to thank everyone involved and it's really wonderful to have my medal again," Cunliffe-Lister said.

"What happened was we went out for dinner at a restaurant by the Trevi Fountain and I showed someone the medal and I think I put it down the side of my chair and when I got back it had disappeared.

"This is really a big, big thank you - I never thought I would see it again!"

Cunliffe-Lister, who sustained a spinal injury in a horse-riding accident, began her disabled sporting career after she met Ludwig Guttmann at Stoke Mandeville hospital in 1958.

She cemented herself as a British Paralympic legend after she achieved silvers in breaststroke, two swimming freestyle events, the table tennis singles as well as sealing the title in the women's doubles at Tokyo 1964.

The Briton closed out her Paralympic career with two medals at Tel Aviv 1968, taking table tennis bronze and silver in the singles and doubles respectively.

Webborn explained the full story behind the process of remaking the medal for a person who he regards as a perfect example of the BPA's vision "to inspire a better world for disabled people".

"To explain how this came about, I received an email about you losing your medal after someone had seen your story in a BBC documentary and I also remembered you visiting me when I was injured and lying in Stoke Mandeville Hospital in 1981," he said.

"It was amazing to think about how you continued to support people who were newly injured and it seemed only right that we should, for that kindness you gave me and so many others, see if we could replace your medal.

"I contacted Vicky Hope-Walker at the National Paralympic Heritage Trust based at Stoke Mandeville and in their collection, they had one of your silver medals from swimming plus another gold medal from another sport to see how we could come up with the replica.

"Today we recognise someone who has done more than most around social impact and demonstrating how our former Paralympians have such powerful stories to tell.

"It's just wonderful to have you here and to present you with the medal you lost in Rome."