A Northumberland man left paralysed following a motorbike accident 30 years ago is taking on a European road trip – with the man who was in the next bed to him in hospital.
David Burdus, 52, of Corbridge, suffered a broken back in the accident at Spennymoor in 1983.
He was treated at hospital in Hexham, where fellow biker Carl Brunning was in the next bed, having suffered similar injuries in a mountaineering accident.
Both men had been dreaming of road trips at the time, but they were left paralysed from the ribcage down and bound to wheelchairs.
Now, they are to finally fulfil their dreams by joining forces for a trip to Barcelona later this month.
David, a former television reporter, suffered a severed spinal cord in the crash and was treated at Hexham Spinal Unit.
In the next bed was fellow ex-TV reporter Carl, now 49 and living near Hull, who had fallen 130 feet.
The two men lost touch but were reunited last year through a shared used of wheelchair access trikes, bikes with ramps up which the chair can be wheeled and fixed into place.
David had used such a trike on a charity road trip to Berlin in 2009.
When the old friends met again, David agreed to join Carl on a trike trip to Barcelona – one of the cities David dreamt of riding to before his accident – from November 22 to 26.
They will be joined by a film crew who will produce a short video of the trip which the duo hope to use to attract interest from television companies on future trips they are planning.
David said: “It is quite a romantic notion that I get to do it, but I am going to do it with a guy who also broke his back and was a biker and was in the next bed to me at Hexham spinal unit.
“The history is pretty emotional. Then you do not see each other for 30 years.
“The idea of going out together with the trikes is like, ‘wow’. That is quite an extraordinary experience so I can not wait, from that perspective.”
David is also planning a trip from John O’Groats to Land’s End next year to raise money for the Percy Hedley Foundation, of which he is a trustee.
In 2015, he and Carl are considering another ride across Europe, or even America.
David is appealing for any businesses who wish to provide sponsorship for the Barcelona trip or anyone who can donate clothing to contact him on firstname.lastname@example.org
Anyone wanting to sponsor him for next year’s mission can visit www.justgiving.com/jogle-2014