Hartlepool dad who suffered serious brain damage in bike accident raises vital cash for charity

A Hartlepool dad who suffered serious brain damage in a cycling accident has handed over the latest cheque in ongoing fundraising efforts to benefit two charities which have supported him and his family.

Thursday, 25th April 2019, 3:48 pm
Updated Thursday, 25th April 2019, 3:55 pm
Alastair Mackay, fourth left, alongside members of Headway Hartlepool and Hartlepool Ukulele Group.

Alastair Mackay was left injured when he came off his bike while out cycling by Lake Windermere.

He was airlifted to hospital by the Great North Air Ambulance Service (GNAAS), and spent the following three months in hospital, of which he was in a coma for two weeks.

Alastair was in a coma for almost two weeks after the incident.

Since the accident, Alastair, a retired detective constable with Northumbria Police, and his family – wife Avril and daughters Ailsa and Megan – and a group of family friends have committed to fundraising for GNAAS and Headway Hartlepool, which has also given invaluable support to the Mackays as Alastair’s recovery continues.

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The family and their supporters have raised thousands of pounds for both charities so far, and last week handed over a further £700, raised by the Hartepool Ukulele Group – of which Avril is a member – and Young At Heart, a group which supports people living with dementia.

GNAAS and Headway each received £350, taking the total fundraising by the Mackays for Headway Hartlepool to £1,847.

Alastair has recently become a trustee of Headway Hartlepool, inspired by his own positive experience of using the service.

Alastair Mackay with wife Avril.

Christopher Spoors, treasurer of Headway Hartlepool – which relaunched in March last year and is now working widely in the local community – said: “We are hugely grateful for the generosity from Alastair and his family.

“We have loved getting to know the whole family and it is great to see Alastair’s continuing recovery.

“It is very pleasing to know the difference our support and services are making to the difference of people living with brain injuries and their families and the ongoing donations from Alastair, Avril, Ailsa and Megan will enable us to extend this to more people who need us.

“Since Headway Hartlepool relaunched last year, we have grown strongly and welcome new members continually.

From left to right, Avril Mackay, daughters Ailsa Mackay and Megan Mackay, and Alastair Mackay.

“We have gone from a monthly group session to twice monthly sessions and our doors are always open to anyone new who would like to come along.

“We are grateful for the support we have had from our members and the community in developing the group and we are confident that will continue.”

Group sessions at Headway Hartlepool take place at Hartlepool People’s Centre on the first Wednesday of each month from 10.30am to 12.30pm and the third Thursday of the month from 2pm to 4pm.

Details about Headway are available at www.headwayhartlepool.org.uk or by emailing: info@headwayhartlepool.org.uk