I need your help & hopefully you can

Note: Updates to the blog are at the bottom if you like to get up to date if you have read the original blog already.

To all my followers; friends & relatives,

Many of you know some years back at around 2011 I returned to cycling after a 20yr gap to help overcome my disability & try to become stick free. And that the disability is fighting back & so far I am not stick free, just need it at times but still cycling to keep it at bay.

And since then I have used this to help promote #getfitgetactive campaign with English Federation of Disability Sport  to show we all can cycle & be active with disabilities (Something I wish I did more when I became disabled decades ago). Part of this was a video done with the EFDS.

Despite my disability fighting back, I still strive to keep pushing the boundaries of my cycling. Built Roadrunner & saved hard to by a new Cruiser style bike that is set-up to make cycling easier for my legs. As well as try do charities ride like I had done a couple years ago.

But the next goal is to try get an eBike to be able to cycle the 22 miles to work as the public transport really sucks & they aint getting better. Now I have spent quite some time looking in this, had to find a light one I can get up the stairs at an affordable price. Even took a day trip to the London Bike show to road test a few as I found most shops just don't stock them to try out in store. And I did find one at quite a reasonable price/mileage & weight I require, the Momentum Upstart.

And at £1350, it's not too badly priced & reviews aren't too bad too. So now just need to get the money, I was hoping to save up over the year & have it by Christmas. Unfortunately situations have changed in the new year & with needing to finance vet bills, new glasses, bed replacement, etc as well as limited hours at work due to disability, I'm finding finances just covers what's needed each month & I don't have any luxuries to cut out. On top of that, public transport is getting far worse & is now effecting my ability to get to work on time (or at all in some cases) & this affects my job & I really like to keep it. I have tried to look at other alternatives, cycle to work scheme that I cant apply for as I don't pay taxes on my wages as I'm part time. Financing isn't an option as if I cant save the money, I sure can't pay the financing. Oh & not to forget the repair costs to my Cruiser bike from a hit & run driver last week.

So this is where I need your help, it has been suggested I should try this by others to try it so I will put it here for you. Would you like to send me a gift of just a few pounds to a crowd-funding account to get the funds to buy this eBike? If only 2/3 of those that know me put in around £3 then that would be enough to get the eBike & make me so humbled & grateful to those who sent me a fantastic gift which will support me in continuing to keep on cycling.

I aint one to ask for money, this wasn't easy choice for me & I have been reluctant to do it in this way. But with the way things are with travelling to work, it's either get the eBike or try find work closer to home. And to be honest I love where I work & those I work with & that is why I have finally got myself to ask you all this so I can stay working where I enjoy to be. And if you do send me a gift to this link gofundme.com/taxakswk, then thankyou ever so much!

Update 11th April 2016

Well its coming up to the end of the first week & what a great start its been, the funding is at 27% & still slowly increasing & its all thanks to those wonderful people who believe in me & the power of cycling.

So as I'm updating this blog, I thought you would like to see the route I would do in the picture below.

I did this route back in 2014 when my legs were a bit better & went to watch the Tour de France on the other side of Chelmsford, as I have said before the route is feasible but not when I have to spend the day at work on my feet all day too.


Not always riding...

At the beginning of the month my 18 month old Brooks Cambium saddle failed, the saddle hadn't moved in the seat post & was all tight when I went to remove it & it had not been changed in position in 18 months as it was perfectly set up. Thus it is clear to me it had failed after 18 months of use & as it has a 10yr guarantee I thought I better get it replaced under the old sales of goods Act & Distance Selling regulations as they were in operation when I bought the saddle.

Now I aint gonna go into a rant or point fingers & do name calling, I am just going to show the correspondences as screenshots between me & the shop & explain the actions taken.

I contacted Brooks & they requested I go through the shop I bought it from so I did.

And thus started the emails between me & the shop...

Here the shop agrees to replace the saddle...

So after I had emailed & was getting saddle ready, I decided I would return the saddle for a full refund as they weren't going to honour any future warranty. This way I could buy direct from Brooks & said so in a letter that went in box when I returned the saddle.

So after a week from posting the saddle at my expense, I get this email & was not what I was expected.

This annoyed me & responded.

The response wasn't any better than the one before...

Now I am being messed about, no refund, no replacement saddle & suggesting returning the broken saddle after I just paid to send it to them to try do it all over again after Brooks told me to do it through the shop I bought it from. As for the excuse of old pay system, it was PayPal & is a system they still use. So I made it clear I was not happy & I wanted the replacement saddle or refund, no other option.

Then I get accused of abusing the staff as I wasn't accepting their excuses or offer & after a few more emails, left it with me having nothing...

So this is where it was left with the shop, I had tweeted my disgust in Brooks warranty not worth a thing after being messed around & wasted my money & time on this & not ever going to buy them again after this & a previous disappointment of a leather saddle I bought. But Brooks got hold of me in response & we chatted via email & today I got my replacement saddle directly from Brooks. We are still discussing why it happened & see if it is an issue of the seat post or the saddle, once they get to look at the saddle from the shop. I have replaced the seat post as a precaution & Brooks has photos of the old seat post to see if it is that being the issue.

So thank-you Brooks in sorting out something that really was not needed to be dealt like this in this way for a simple warranty. Roadrunner is now back on the road & I'm gonna be taking her out tomorrow.

And as for the shop, if you're wondering who this shop was. Well before I name them I aint saying don't use them yourselves & just leave it to you to decide if you want to or not & no doubt many of you have used them for years without issues tho not sure if any of them have used the warranty of their goods with the shop. But after my experience I will never use Always Riding again!