15th June 2019
Nigel was a keen cyclist who had secured several high-profile wins under his belt, including beating the future World Cyclo-cross Champion and future World Pursuit Champion. However, on 5th November 2012, Nigel went for a bike ride that would change his life completely.
After competing at a national cycling event the previous day, Nigel went for a ‘loosening up’ ride down his usual route near his home. The roads were quiet and almost traffic free.
As he neared a junction at the bottom of a hill, Nigel was involved in a horrific collision with an oncoming car. As the car cut across the road, Nigel and his bike were thrown into the air as they collided head on.
He suffered a broken neck, seven broken ribs, a punctured lung, as well as damage to his right arm, leg, shoulder, pelvis, hand and elbow. His right ear was also completely torn off.
Within minutes, the police arrived at the scene and immediately requested for the Lincs & Notts Air Ambulance to be dispatched. Once the crew arrived at the scene, they took quick action and airlifted Nigel straight to Queens Medical Centre in Nottingham.
Although Nigel cannot recall the arrival of the Lincs & Notts Air Ambulance, he is ‘eternally grateful’ for their intervention. He said: “I feel that I may have been unconscious when the Lincs & Notts Air Ambulance arrived, as I cannot remember anything! However, what I do know is that these amazing people helped to save my life and got me to hospital when time was running out.”
Nigel spent a week in intensive care, slipping in and out of a coma. He recalls: “I remember waking up long enough to recognise my sister at my bedside. I said to her ‘please go home and rescue my pet hamster, he’ll need feeding.’ I then felt myself slip back into a deep sleep.
“Clearly my hamster meant a lot to me, but it just proves that I didn’t realise quite how bad my injuries were.”
After several months of intense physiotherapy, Nigel went on to make a miraculous recovery.
Nigel now lives in the south of France, where he has converted the ground floor of his home into a self-catering apartment. Instead of charging people for their stay, he simply requests they make a £100 donation to the Lincs & Notts Air Ambulance.
He said: “I feel that I owe so much to the Lincs & Notts Air Ambulance for helping to save my life. I have currently raised a total of £3,600 and am hoping to reach the £10,000 mark. I’ve even sold my car on behalf of this amazing Charity.”
In December 2018, Nigel was invited to meet Dr Simon Topham who was on board the Ambucopter that day. “I was extremely proud to shake Dr Topham’s hand” said Nigel. “That really meant a lot to me.
“Saying thank you costs nothing, but I want to go a lot further than that. I will always to support this incredible Charity and help them to continue helping others.”