This Sunday saw a scooter invasion of Doncaster but it was all for a good cause. Vespa’s and Lambretta’s united all came together and responded to the call for help from Doncaster Cancer charity The Eve Merton Dreams Trust. The reason, to make a dream come true for local man Martin Astill (46), currently fighting against a serious Cancer condition. His dream may seem a simple one for some but to Martin it was a lifelong dream come true. Plus it came at a time both he and his family really needed something to smile about.
Martins lifelong Dream was to be a part of a MOD group, sit and ride on a Vespa or Lambretta and hear the noise of the engines as a group rode through. Sarah Maye the charities dreams co-ordinator told us, “I became a part of the charity after they answered a dream for me. I just wanted to ensure Tracey & Martin both felt the amazing waves of joy that I did”. The charities vision for the day was of dozens of scooters riding down Martins street in Dunscroft and riding away with him on the back of his Dream Vesper. However it seems the Scooter world had bigger plans than that and together with the help of a special facebook page, scooter groups from all our surrounding areas game together as one to make a convoy of 300 riding through Doncaster.
Martin’s wife Tracey who liaised with Sarah during secret meetings at work told us a little about his story, “It all started towards the end of last year in November. We were sat eating dinner after a 12 hour shift when Martin starting violently choking, at the time we put it down to him just shovelling it in (as you do) because he was starving. We went away on holiday and by the end Martin was reduced to a liquid diet as he could no longer eat. On returning home Martin was booked in for a gastroscopy where the doctor discovered ‘A highly suspicious malignant tumour’ later to be diagnosed as Cancer of the Oesophagus” After the diagnosis Martin faced up to 2 choices, to fight or not to fight, and together Martin & Tracey decided to fight it with all they had, starting with chemotherapy in January of this year.
It was at that stage Tracey’s work colleague would share with her a charity she was closely connected to, a charity that did all they could to answer dreams and making both the patients and the surrounding family smile. Her question was simple, “If Martin could have a dream, what would it be?” and from that point the charity were involved.
Scooter clubs travelled wide and far
Martin would be greeted at his home, where he was expecting to be going to a christening, by a scooter and a photographer. From there Martin would climb aboard the back of the bike and make the short trip to Dunscroft Welfare Club where another 300 scooters were parked up waiting for him. The scooter clubs had travelled wide and far and they did it for a stranger, they didn’t do it for a fee or for gratitude, the simply did it to make one man smile. The charity would like to thank the following for their time, Scunthorpe Silhouttes, Goole Club, The 103’s, White Rose Scooter Club, Doncaster Hunters, Armthorpe Animals SC, Dearne Valley SC, Lost & Lonely SC Isle of Axholme, Wideboys Lambretta SC, Skellow Carcroft SC, Bedlam SC, Scunthorpe Pathfinders SC, Sevenhills SC, Vespa Club of Britain, Killamarsh Nomads, Dukesy Scarborough, Featherstone Spartans SC & STBESC.Not only did they all show up, they took it upon themselves to have specialised pins made up for the day and brought a £500 donation to help more Doncaster people.
Martin ended the day with an emotional message, “I will remember for the rest of my life .I have been asked to write something for the website but I don’t think I can say exactly how I feel in writing and how emotional it has been. I just keep repeating thank you because how amazing is it that so many strangers I have never met have done something like this for me?”