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Thread: Emergency help in Scotland

  1. #1
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    Emergency help in Scotland

    Not sure if this is the right forum but wanted to share following story of an incident that happened on our recent tour of North England and the Borders. Apologies for the length but I hope it conveys the seriousness of the incident but also the incredible kindness shown to us when we really were in need....

    Having travelled up from Harwich over the days 13 /14 & 15 July, the 4th day of our tour took us across the border into Scotland for our leg from the Lakes to the Northumberland coast. Crossing the border close to the Kielder Forrest we came across some quite poor roads; nonetheless great GS riding terrain. At one point one of our party veered of sharply to the right and disappeared. As the person following, shocked at what I'd just seen and not quite believing it, I though he'd taken the bend too fast and as we were quite spread out I decided to catch up to the guy at the lead of the convoy. As we tend to stick in certain ride order I was even more stressed to see that our number 2 was not behind the leader. Conclusion, he'd gone off the road. Panic!! Immediately you assume the worst. The sides of the road where I'd seen it all happen were very steep with high drops on one side as the road was basically leaning into the hillside.
    Thankfully when I got back down the road to where it had all happened I was very grateful to see the rider and following party members altogether. No broken bones, not even a scratch but bike well down the embankment and no way it was coming out. So what to do? Being in the middle of nowhere there was no phone signal so 2 of us agreed to ride on ahead (my ZUMO showed the next garage on our route was 12 km away). We got about 3 km and he road was closed. Shit, back on ourselves and back to the tiny vollage (4 houses) and an old fashioned red phone box where we at least had a signal. I'm about to call the AA.... Suddenly out of the blue a middle aged man came out of one of the gardens and asked us if we needed directions to get past the closed road. Actually we needed a lot more than directions this time.....
    Once we had explained our predicament and explained there were no injuries the gentlemen laughed and said that he'd have us out in no time. Strangely according to him there had been 3 other incidents in the past 2 months due to the bad road conditions so it seemed like a bit of a hobby for him to rescue bikers, besides, he said, it got him out of the gardening.

    So back down the road to the spot where the bike was and soon we realized that there was no option but to lift it out with a crane or Hiab. Bike really was down a very sharp embankemnt in severe undergrowth. Just getting to the bike meant using a chainsaw to cut it free. Again, no problems, even it being a Sunday, said gentlemen returned home and brought out his neighbours all of whom were farmers. Within 1/2 hour we had a lift crane and a car with trailer and an hour later bike was back in said gentlemen's garage. Turns out he was a biker himself and had 3 bikes in his shed plus all the tools needed to give the bike a good once over. After the once over, some refreshment's courtesy of said gentlemens wife (bearing in mind it was over 20 degrees) we had the bike fixed up and ready to go. 2 hours after the incident we were heading towards Hawick and our tour was back on track.

    So what's the point of the story? 2 things; how our dear fellow rider managed to get out unscathed is a pure miracle. About 2 feet to the right and he'd be planted into a large oak and another 2 to the left and the bike would have dropped another 40 feet. Fatality in both cases. Second and most importantly was the wiliness and helpfulness of this gentlemen and his wife as well as hsd neighbour famers who found it all a bit of banter and fun to get us back on the road again.
    Not often in life do you see such kindness and for the majority of our (foreign) party it was indeed a warm welcome and sign of Scottish helpfulness and hospitality. Needless to say a case of good whisky is on its was to said gentleman as a small token of our gratitude; as you can imagine he would not accept anything from us on the day. His only request was that he'd hoped that someone would help him if he was in the same position.

  2. #2
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    well done to those guys who helped you out .

  3. #3
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    I love hearing things like this ...

    This has made my day.
    Thank you for posting.
    appears bright from a distance / dim up close

  4. #4
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    Friendly in the Borders - see...............

    Al
    If I am ever on life support - Unplug me......
    Then plug me back in..........

    See if that works .....

  5. #5
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    A heart warming tale, for sure

    Have you got his address?....................be useful to add as a waypoint
    JohnnyBoxer



    So many roads...........So little time......

  6. #6
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    Can't be right....20 degrees in the Borders? Never gets above 12...

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by gerarddwatts View Post
    Can't be right....20 degrees in the Borders? Never gets above 12...
    actually it was closer to 23/ 24.....

  8. #8
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    Brilliant. Thanks for posting. Glad to know that you are all well.

    As they say - Bikers are gentle giants

  9. #9
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    Thanks for posting - and for sending the man a decent dram. Nice to know someone was happy to help - though I like to think most of us would do what we could.

    I stopped recently when I saw a couple of Italians broken down, one wheel off a bike - but someone else had beaten me to it and taken the wheel away to get it fixed, so some other barsteward got the whisky that day!

  10. #10
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    Nice one fella, I always you reap what you sew.... spread the joy. hope you all got home ok

  11. #11
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    great story, good to hear all ended well,

  12. #12
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    Good one

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