15-year-old Reece, has autism, epilepsy and global development delay, meaning he’s unable to ride a regular bike.
Ste Hillyard, Reece’s dad, explains:
“In the past few years, walking has become a struggle for Reece. He’s quite unsteady on his feet and has low muscle tone, so he gets tired easily. He has physio regularly, but as he’s got older it’s become more apparent that walking long distances can be a struggle for him.
“It felt like his world was getting smaller, but having this trike this has opened up his world.”
The Tomcat trike, which can be adapted as Reece grows so will last him way into adulthood, not only gives the family the chance to get out and about more but it will also have huge health benefits for Reece.
Reece’s mum, Sharon, explains:
“With Reece struggling to walk it’s always a bit of a worry that he won’t get enough exercise but the trike gives him this opportunity – he can peddle whilst we help steer him in the right direction.
“The trike has specialist leg braces too, which will help to keep his feet and knees from turning in.
“Reece has no danger awareness, so when we take him out there’s always a worry that he’ll run off. Having peace of mind that he’s safe and secure in the trike, is a huge weight off and will make our outings more stress-free.”
Now that the trike has arrived, Ste and Sharon are planning to take Reece to Blackpool Illuminations, something they haven’t been able to do for years.
“As soon as the weather improves, we’re planning to take Reece to Blackpool for the illuminations, which is something we used to love to do a family but haven’t been able to for some time.
“Having the trike means we can do simple things, like taking the dog for a walk together. For a few years now, one of has had to walk the dog while the other one stays at home with Reece.
“Just being able to go out for a whole day rather than just an hour or two will be a huge thing for all of us. I can’t tell you how much it means to us that we’re finally able to spend more time together outside of the house.”