Photo 2 Dave and Carl in their trikes
Dave and Carl's disability awareness raising road trip had a number of supporters, two support vans (both wheelchair accessible) with drivers, a mechanic, a PR co-ordinator and a director/camera operator who was filming a documentary.
“We couldn’t complete this promotional JET Journey without the Disability Confidence of our supporters” said Dave and Carl, “A big thank you to everyone, including our title sponsor, JET Petrol, who fuelled us on the journey together and helped to fund our Disability Confident Video documentary. Greggs - “the UKs leading bakery food-on-the-go retailer” provided our hungry event team with fresh and tasty sandwiches and drinks from its shops along the route and Premier Inn ensured we got a great night’s sleep – every night!
Pete George, Managing Director of Phillips 66 Ltd, the company that owns the JET brand, said that “2014 is an important year for JET as it celebrates 60 years of supplying fuel to forecourts across the UK. What better way for us to mark the occasion than to support a journey of a different kind, but one which is so inspirational and thought-provoking?”
Supporters also include Vapor Ricon Europe, Hands Free Computing, InterCAT, Bikesure, LS2 Helmets, Fantomeline Productions, PJ Motor Services, Simon Storage, The Black Bull Haltwhistle, RGK Wheelchairs, The Alumni Association of Newcastle University, MRA Wind Shields and NE Marble and Granite”.
For more information contact David Burdus:
The Percy Hedley Foundation's Splash Appeal is Dave and Carl's nominated charity - a £1m appeal for a hydrotherapy pool for disabled children.
Dave and Carl aim to raise £5,000 for the Splash Appeal.
Why not arrange a raffle, do your own bike ride or sponsored event and send us a photo for our social media blog.
You can donate directly to the Percy Hedley Foundation by texting SPLASH to 70500 to donate £5 to the Splash Appeal.
Petrol heads Dave Burdus and Carl Brunning have completed the John O’Groats to Land’s End challenge on the world’s first high performance motor cycles… for wheelchair users, stopping off at Downing Street and the Santapod drag strip during their epic ‘JET Journey’.
On Tuesday 1st September the duo set off from Newcastle’s Quayside for John O’Groats on their Mad Max-style 1150cc three-wheeled monsters to start a disability stereotype-busting, 2,200 mile, 10-day road trip promoting the Department for Work and Pensions Disability Confident Campaign, and raising money for The Percy Hedley Foundation's Splash Appeal - a £1m appeal for a hydrotherapy pool for disabled children.
The John O’Groats to Lands End section itself took 6 days starting on the 4th September with a film crew following Dave and Carl’s journey together, calling in at Inverness, Edinburgh, Newcastle, Hull and London along the way before arriving at Land’s End on the 9th to a glorious Cornish sunset.
The pair was looking out for examples of access best practice and disability confidence on their journey and in London met up with Mark Harper, Minister for Disabled People on 10th September at Downing Street.
“We were able to give Mark an update on our JET Journey”, said Dave, “and use his status at the famous Downing Street to raise the profile of the disability confident campaign”. Mr Harper said: “They are sending a very positive message to employers that they should give disabled people an opportunity to go and work in their businesses.” “I think they are a very good example of people who, when they put their minds to it, there is nothing they cannot do.”
“The Downing Street stop off certainly grabbed attention”, said Carl, “which allows us to push out our message to employers that disabled people are skilled and motivated, and with the right equipment and support are equally dependable and capable as non-disabled employees”. “Our disability confident road trip is a perfect example of disabled people’s potential” said Dave, “and our planning, determination and staying power is readily transferable to the workplace”.
The two adventurers struck up a friendship when they were left paralysed through spinal injuries and found themselves in neighbouring beds in Hexham Spinal Injuries Unit in 1983. Carl, 50, fell 150ft when mountaineering with two friends in the Lake District and Dave, 53, had a motorcycle crash at Spennymoor. Car said: “When we talked about doing it in hospital it was just a pipe dream – but now our plans have come to fruition.“
The motor trikes have powerful BMW R1150R front ends, built in electric tail ramps and locking mechanisms for securely fastening their wheelchairs in place. The gear change is made by pressing a button with the thumb on the left hand. “The trikes are a bit Batmen meets Judge Dredd”, said David. “When we approach, all heads turn. People are totally impressed and most don’t suspect that we are driving from wheelchairs until we drop out of the back or drive past. You can see it really challenges pre-conceptions of disability. All the questions are about the trikes and none about our impairment or wheelchairs which is very refreshing”.
Said Carl, “At the end of the day people are recognising what we are doing isn’t superhuman, it’s just everyday normal! We are just two guys doing what we love – riding motorbikes!”
The above video shows Dave and Carl in a short teaser video cut from the JET Journey for a talk at JET Petrol HQ, Leamington Spa on 22nd September 2014. For a video of the boys visiting Hexham Hospital (where they first met in 1983 as spinal injured patients) can be seen by clicking here.