Charity steps in with new bike after ‘devastated’ teenager has his stolen

Joseph with his new bike from TAG bikes Huntingdon

Joseph with his new bike from TAG bikes Huntingdon - Credit: Archant

The family of a teenager from Little Paxton who has learning difficulties have thanked a charity for donating a new bike, after their son’s was stolen while he was at work.

Angie Anness, the mum of 25-year-old Joseph Anness, said it was "devastating" to learn her autistic son's bike was stolen on July 16 from outside the Priory Centre, in St Neots.

Joseph uses the bike to cycle to the town as he volunteers at the Cancer Research shop. He also needs his bike to do his apprenticeship at Wyboston Lakes every Thursday.

Angie said that the bike was her son's "pride and joy" and that he "had saved hard" to buy it.

She said: "Obviously the loss of his bike had a devastating effect on him. He had lost his only mode of transport, his confidence and his independence. Joseph had saved hard for his bike and it was his pride and joy.

"I contacted a local group he attends, Switch Now, which oversees his apprenticeship, to advise that Joseph would be very upset still when he arrived at Wyboston this Thursday.

"Switch Now, unknown to me or Joseph, contacted TAG bikes in Huntingdon, an additional needs group that recycles and re-conditions unwanted bikes, and arranged for Joseph to be gifted a bike from them that same day.

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"TAG very generously donated a bike. Switch even went over to Huntingdon to collect it for Joseph and presented it to him when he has finished his shift that day at Wyboston."

TAG Bikes, located at Huntingdon Community Centre, is an additional needs group that recycles old bikes.

"This has restored Joseph's faith in people, which is something he struggles with, but most importantly, has given him back his independence," said Angie.

Rob Bierton, from TAG bikes, said: "It was a pleasure to help Joseph after his bicycle was stolen from St Neots. Mark from Switch Now contacted us and we found an immediate solution for Joseph.

"At TAG Bikes we have wonderful community support with our bike sales and bike shop which enables us to fund and support stories like Joseph - a true example of partnership working together to put a rainbow on a cloudy day."