David's 80 day challenge One man is about to take on a cycling challenge unlike any other. Locked-in-syndrome patient David Collings (60), who has been conscious but unable to move or speak since suffering a brain stem stroke in December 2016, will be cycling for two hours every day, for 80 days, to raise money for Bluebell Wood. David, who comes from Aston, has been inspired to take on the challenge on the MOTOmed therapy bike at STEPS Rehabilitation Centre in Sheffield after hearing that one of his cycling heroes, Mark Beaumont, set a new world record cycling around the world in 79 days last September. David, who can only communicate using his eyes, will start his two-hour a day indoor biking marathon on Thursday 24 May, supported by his wife Carole and staff at the facility. The centre is working on an intensive rehabilitation programme with David in the hope he will regain some movement in future. Before his stroke, David was incredibly active and had completed several huge sporting challenges in support of South Yorkshire’s only children’s hospice, including cycling from Scotland to Brighton, and cycling 4,000 miles around Britain in six weeks, averaging up to 80 miles a day. He also took on wild swimming challenges, swimming in Salford Quays and Lake Windermere. David’s daughter Georgina Tyler-Collings said: “Dad was only 59 years old when he had the stroke during a holiday in France. We’re a big, very close family and this was a huge shock and incredibly hard for all of us to come to terms with. However, dad has always been an all-round amazing person and very sporty, so perhaps his decision to use his therapy bike to take on this new challenge should not come as a huge surprise. We’re in more awe of him now than we’ve ever been. We hope that everyone will dig deep and support him as he takes on this massive adventure.” David has decided to fundraise for Bluebell Wood once again after finding out that the two-year-old son of Lisa Lax-Harding, head of housekeeping at STEPS, is supported by the North Anston charity. Lisa, who lives in Heeley, Sheffield, said: “I know first-hand the amazing work Bluebell Wood does, because my little boy Finlay goes there for short stays. His condition means he is on a respirator and needs constant care, day and night, so we don’t get much sleep. Coming to Bluebell Wood means we can get a good night’s sleep and know Finlay is being well looked after by the care team. I’m definitely going to sponsor David.” Bluebell Wood community fundraiser Gail Parkin said: “Everyone at Bluebell Wood is immensely humbled that David has chosen us for his 80-day challenge. He is showing incredible strength of spirit not just throughout his rehabilitation programme, but in continuing to think of other families in addition to his own and in wanting to make a difference for them. It is a huge privilege and honour to have David’s support, and we will be supporting him all the way. “Bluebell Wood cares for families facing the toughest of times, helping them to make special memories. Every penny that David raises will go a long way in helping these families to live with love and laughter, whether they have days, months or years left together.” To sponsor David on his 80-day challenge please go to: www.justgiving.com/fundraising/davids80daychallenge.