A ONE-EYED cat who has used up several of his nine-lives could be in line for a national award.

Twenty-year-old Nelson of Seaham, County Durham, beat scores of other felines to take his place as one of three shortlisted cats in the Most Incredible Story category in the Cats Protection’s National Cat Awards 2014.

And Nelson's life story certainly qualifies, as he has come through countless scrapes in his long life.

As a kitten he was callously thrown into the sea in a sack, alongside his littermates. Fortunately a fisherman plucked the bag from the waves - but only Nelson and one other kitten survived.

The tough times weren’t over for brave Nelson who then spent the following years living on the dock, in a little cabin being watched over by local fishermen.

However, life was tough, and Nelson lost an eye when a gang threw rocks at him.

Nelson was eventually scared out of his home in 2009 when work started on the new marina and the workmen and heavy machinery became too frightening.

However, Nelson hit the jackpot in the bitterly cold winter of 2009 when he spotted the Huntley-Crow family on a visit to the Seaham Harbour Marina.

He followed them back to the car and taking pity on him the family decided to adopt him.

In January 2014 Nelson was diagnosed with an inoperable heart tumour, but the plucky older gent - who is about 100 in human years - fought back and amazed vets with his zest for life.

Nelson’s owner Andrea Huntley-Crow of Seaham, County Durham, said: “Nelson is our little miracle, a real character and we love him very much."

The prestigious ceremony sponsored by Purina will be held at The Savoy, in London, on August 7.

The winner will be selected by celebrity judge Paul Copley who appears as Mr Mason in ITV’s critically-acclaimed period drama Downton Abbey.

If Nelson wins the award, then he will also be in with a chance of winning the prestigious title of National Cat of the Year.