Presenting the newest addition to the ‘Two’s Company’ tandem fleet: Paul’s Silver Sparkler.
Two’s Company provides joyful, liberating days out riding tandems for visually impaired people. Robin, Two’s Company's coordinator, explains how the pride of the fleet came to be part of the project…
“This is quite a sad story, but it does at least have a happy ending…”
A while ago one of our very-long standing Two’s Company volunteer front riders, or ‘tandem pilots’, Paul, sadly passed away. We were touched to find out that he had left a selection of cycling-related items to Life Cycle. Amongst his trove of treasures, we discovered a bike frame and a few boxes of bike parts. On closer inspection they appeared to be the assorted parts of a tandem bike.
The frame had the most amazing paint job – sparkly silver paint with the Life Cycle logo carefully picked out in coloured lettering. We realised this must have been a project Paul was secretly working on, and we all pictured what a wonderful surprise it would have been on the day he turned up to a ride, proudly accompanied by this sparkling beauty. Very sadly this was not to be.
For months the boxes of parts lay in our store room, most of us lacking either the time or the expertise to build a tandem from scratch. That was until the frame was spotted by some of the guys from our ‘Bike Back’ project…
As you can imagine, the bike caused quite a stir at our Bike Back workshop and pretty soon the team was lovingly building and restoring it - finding all the necessary missing parts to produce a fine addition to our fleet of tandems, just as Paul would have wanted.
Last week the bike was finally finished, and presented to Robin by Mike, one of Life Cycle’s mechanics. The Two’s Company rides are soon to start up again after the winter, and Robin is really excited to present the new bike to the group.
Robin and Mike trying out the tandem after it was finished
“Two’s Company could not exist without the heart-warming generosity of people like Paul. We were incredibly saddened by his passing, but his memory lives on through his fantastic bike that will greatly enhance the lives of the visually impaired people in the Two’s Company family” - Robin, Two's Company Coordinator
“It was such a pleasure to work on this beautiful bike, knowing how much it would have meant to Paul to see it finished. What a lovely gift for the Two’s Company ‘back riders’ and volunteers who will get so much pleasure from riding it on their excursions” - Mike, Life Cycle's mechanic
We would like to thank Sarah Williams of Smiling Eyes International for her donation of £100 which helped fund the costs of putting this lovely bike together.
Mike proudly hands over the finished sparkly tandem to Robin
Feel inspired? Find out how you can help…
Help blind and visually impaired people to experience the joys and freedoms of riding a bike:
Donate a bike to our ‘Bike Back’ project
Buy a refurbished bike – and support our work
Speak to us about legacy giving, email: Ed@lifecycleuk.org.uk