May 2020 – Update

As we celebrate the first two months of our existence it is amazing how one story quickly becomes another. Our plan was to start out with a fully branded bike which got out to events to meet bikers dace to face. What actually happened was a virus which shut down most of the world and meant everything changed. We suddenly became very relevant to people online asking social media channels and internet tools.

This is the newsletter that shares a bit about what has been happened through the strange world reshaped by the Corona Virus

3 ways biking can improve your health

Came across this article and thought it was worth sharing

A long term plan of our team is to commission a piece of academic research which explores this in more detail. Wouldn’t it be good if we could get Doctors to prescribe a 6 week course with the Mental Health Motorbike! Well this is what we are aiming for. Watch this space.

Seaways Cafe

A few days ago I got a phone call from Mike Thatcher who runs and owns seaways café. For those that don’t know seaways café is on the A166, Fimber Road near Driffield. A gateway to the east coast and beautiful Flamborough Head.

They have an incredible bike following and it’s the known destination for anybody travelling in this area. So Mike asked us to do the first podcast that he’s offering out his network. For us this was a really important phone call because it started to validate what we are doing from somebody that is respected within the biker industry. This is a man that knows bikes and he knows the biker psyche. After all when you’re dealing with hundreds of them each day you start to get an insight.

Mike is very easy to get on with, a guy clearly passionate and was keen to hear about what we are doing. So we jumped at the opportunity to do the interview with him. I think it went really well I will try and put a link to it below. It’s all good practice hopefully we won’t use the video elements of it just the audio!!!

We can’t wait until after lockdown so we can get over and have a proper cup of tea together and meet you all over on the east coast but until then you just have to listen to us.

Once again Mike thanks for the opportunity and look forward to meeting your network of bikers. Paul

Lockdown rules relaxing

We are at that turning point this weekend with what appears to be lockdown restrictions been eased out in phased measures. We are not sure what this means for us bikers yet. Whatever your decision to take your bike out please be safe and let people make their own informed decisions – we are all adults here.

We’ve been working with lots of people Who been really struggling with her mental health because of the lockdown. Let’s not become divided because people choose one thing or another.

Things to think about:

  1. There will be lots of people on the road haven’t driven for months
  2. Go easy on your bikes let them run themselves in again
  3. It’s a bank holiday weekend nice weather and because of VE Day stuff Watch out for people who have been drinking
  4. Don’t get into unnecessary arguments with people if they have a go at you for being out on your bike
  5. Remember the NHS is still under huge amount of pressure, don’t add to this burden by taking stupid risks on your bike
  6. Don’t go on a long distance rideout as police are still prosecuting people for this

Take care – and remember if you need to talk or someone to reach out to give us a shout.

How is it going?

We officially started the Mental Health Motorbike at the beginning of March 2020 and if we knew then what we know now would we have done things differently?

This is a very difficult question to answer because we are still in the thick of a world crisis that has never happened before. A crisis where historians and families will talk about this decades from now. It will probably take a few months or even years to come up with an answer to this question. What I do know is I feel very proud and inspired for setting up the Mental Health Motorbike with Jay and Andy.

It has overwhelmed me at times the shear number of people reaching out to us and talking about their mental health issues. I’ve always known what you see on the news is just the tip of the iceberg but to actually deal with real human beings on an intensely intimate level it is incredible. It is tough, sad, emotional and frustrating at times. But it’s also an incredible privilege to try your very best to support somebody who is in crisis. I feel we are doing a good job at the moment with limited resources, no financial support and not enough hours in the day. I also feel we are creating friendships with people who will go on a much longer journey with the Mental Health Motorbike post lockdown.

As I look back to the early part of this year my financial position was healthy I had lots of work coming in and some of the most interesting international projects to look forward to. Within weeks I saw all of this wiped out with the prospects of my company (setup in 2008) never recovering. I have every reason to be depressed, scared, angry and frustrated myself. But I’m holding onto the fact there are thousands of people out there in this position, and we have to be strong not become another statistic adding to the mental health narrative.

The Mental Health Motorbike has been my lifeline during this difficult period. Supporting others has never felt so important. I know whatever happens in my wider life and career this has been a defining period for me. I’ve also realised it is essential we continue the service and my commitment, passion and energy to make this a huge success supporting thousand more bikers. We need you support more than ever but ultimately… watch this space!