A CYCLIST who suffered a brain injury after being knocked off his bike has celebrated fulfilling a ‘lifelong dream’ of living in and renovating his dad’s former Hoyland farmhouse - despite ongoing recovery challenges.
Stephen Bradbury was out riding his bike in Ecclesfield in June 2020 when he was hit by a van driven by a man over the drug limit - causing him to sustain brain damage, several fractures and damage to his teeth.
The 52-year-old remained in hospital for 16 days following the incident, and has used ‘Action For Brain Injury Week’ to speak for the first time about how he’s ‘determined to overcome his injuries and raise awareness of the support available’.
Stephen sought help from serious injury lawyers at Irwin Mitchell to help him access specialist rehabilitation and therapies he needed - and help to support his move to the farmhouse after securing him an interim payment of funds.
The dad-of-two continues to suffer ‘constant pain’ in his left arm and right wrist, and is bothered by flare-ups of other aches and pains, as well as experiencing memory loss, fatigue and issues with his concentration and speech.
As part of his recovery, he has undergone nasal surgery and dental treatment and sees a physiotherapist and neuro-psychologist.
“Since my injuries, my life has changed dramatically,” said Stephen.
“I have difficulty carrying out simple day-to-day tasks and this leaves me feeling angry and frustrated as I’ve become a lot more reliant on my wife, Donna.
“While my memory is bad since the crash, I can recall everything before that and it makes me very upset to remember how good my old life was and how it’s not the same anymore.
“After what happened, I wasn’t able to drive for about a year and have also had my HGV licence revoked until next June.
“I’ve been able to do some of the administrative side of things at work, but I hate not being able to drive the lorries as that’s what I loved doing.
“I can’t change what I’ve been through but I’m determined not to let it ruin my life.
“I have such great support from family and friends, and I know that will get me through.
“Moving into my dad’s old farmhouse has always been a lifelong dream of mine and there was no way I was going to let my injuries stop that from becoming reality.
“However, I won’t be able to do the renovations myself which had been the plan previously.
“I just hope that by speaking out, others will see that there is life after a brain injury - you’re not alone and help is available.”
The driver who hit Stephen was ordered to undertake 250 hours of unpaid work, pay a surcharge of £128 and costs of £85, was disqualified from driving for 24 months and received a 16-week suspended sentence.
Ian Whittaker, the serious injury expert at Irwin Mitchell representing Stephen and his wife, added: “Stephen suffered life-changing injuries when he was knocked off his bike and the past two years have been incredibly tough for him as he attempts to come to terms with what he’s been through.
“While Stephen continues to make progress with his recovery, he still faces many challenges.”