Timperley Nursing Home resident's VIP experience at Tour of Britain
A 90-year-old Timperley Nursing Home resident enjoyed a VIP experience at the Tour of Britain, capping a lifelong love of cycling.
Staff at the Kingsley Healthcare home in Mainwood Road, Timperley were aware of Peter Hesham's passion and activities coordinator Iwona Pawelczyk reached out to Tour organisers when she discovered the week-long event was starting in nearby Altrincham.
She was as thrilled as Mr Hesham when they invited him as a special guest to watch the start of the race on Sunday <Sep 3> morning.
"Peter was overwhelmed with joy and eagerly counted down the days until the event, unable to contain his excitement," said Ms Pawelczyk.
"On the day of the Tour of Britain opening stage, he was treated to a special viewing experience. He joined in the countdown to the start, watched the cyclists, reminisced about his own cycling days, and chatted with fellow fans.
"Seated on the terrace in front of the stage, Peter cheered on the cyclists, participated in interviews, and posed for photos with guests and cyclists alike. The atmosphere was electric, the weather perfect, and the breakfast served was the cherry on top.
"The entire experience was nothing short of wonderful and Peter expressed his deep appreciation."
Mr Hesham said the experience exceeded his expectations and he never imagined that he would still be a part of such a prestigious cycling event.
"Today was way beyond what I ever imagined! At 90, I didn't think I'd be here, but it's been a blast. I've always loved cycling, and being around these cyclists and fans made me so happy. Huge thanks to everyone who made this possible. It's a day I'll never forget," he said.
Mr Hesham, who has three children and six grandchildren, began cycling as a teenager and his daughter Jane Larder said it had been one of his big passions “along with my mum Jean, playing the piano and his beloved Manchester City”.
She said: “When my mum went on holiday to Wales with her family, before they were married, he missed her so much he cycled to see her from Manchester.
“His job as a management accountant took him to many places in the world, including Uganda and Ghana in Africa, and he even managed to get in some cycling on these trips.”
He was in his 70s when he finally got to fulfil his ambition of completing a stage of the Tour de France, she added.
Since moving to Timperley Nursing Home two years ago from his home in Sale, Mr Hesham has kept up his cycling on a stationary bike.
His enthusiasm even encouraged staff and fellow residents to join him on an indoor cycle marathon to raise funds for the Alzheimer’s Society. He led the way by cycling 10 miles in three stints during the three-day event.
Ms Pawelczyk said: " Dignity in care is so important and we love doing things that bring staff and residents together.
“At Timperley, we are passionate about person-centred care and encouraging people to carry on doing the things they love. The emphasis is on what they can still do rather than what they can’t.”