A Wiltshire farmer is facing an amazing cycle challenge 23 years after losing his leg in a horrific farming accident. Sixty year old Mike Pope from Bradford-upon-Avon is gearing up for the 100 mile cycle ride from Bath to London to raise money for leading medical charity Action Research on August Bank Holiday Sunday.
Mike had to make an agonising crawl across a field back to his farmhouse to raise the alarm after the terrifying accident in 1980.
"After losing my leg, I never thought I would ride a bike again. But one day I was on a family trip by the canal when I decided to give it a try with my artificial leg" says Mike. "It took a lot of adjustments but I finally found something that worked for me. I completed 16 miles on my first attempt and decided to put my new found hobby to a good cause. I’m now facing 100 miles in one day."
Since first climbing back into the saddle on the canal bank, Mike has worked closely with Southmead Hospital in Bristol to develop an artificial limb that can be worn whilst cycling.
Rob Orme from Action Research says, "This will be an incredible achievement by a remarkable person. Mike is just one example of our work touching the lives of almost everyone in the UK. Action Research is well known for its work helping babies and children but our work benefits all age groups."
Mike was particularly interested in cycling for Action Research because, amongst the hundreds of projects the Charity has funded in its 50-year history, there have been several looking for answers to problems around amputation. One recent Action Research study in Edinburgh revealed ways of limiting chronic pain following limb amputation which may well lead to treatments to reduce such pain.
The Charity is currently spending £10 million on 100 projects around the country researching a whole range of conditions. To take part in the Action 100 Bike ride on Sunday 24th August, contact 0117 970 6348 or go to www.action.org.uk. Participants choose to cycle from Bristol or Bath to London.
Your donation could help fund vital research for children