Meet the Tandem Trekkers helping visually impaired people in Huddersfield

A tandem biking group in Huddersfield, which teams visually-impaired riders with sighted cyclists, is looking for more volunteers to meet rising demand.

Tandem Trekkers was set up in 2014 and has been growing in popularity every year since.

The group started with just three tandems and now has twenty one, with more than eighty members.

The aim is to allow visually-impaired cyclists to experience a freedom many believed was no longer theirs to enjoy.

Like founding member Martin Eatherly.

He said: "I never thought that I would be able to ride a bike again when I lost my eyesight. And when you go on the back of a tandem it gives you a sense of freedom and you're out in the outdoors, you've got good conversation with your pilot who tells you - they give you good audio description of what's going on around you."

The Tandem Trekkers have been going since 2014 and growing as a group ever since

The Tandem Trekkers build trust between the sighted rider, known as the pilot, and their partner, known as the stoker.

Jules Armitage lost her sight in the space of six months through hereditary disease which attacked the optic nerve. Riding tandem has allowed her to continue the passion that's always been a big part of her life.

She said: "When I could see, which was about seven years ago now, I did used to cycle to work so I had my own solo bike so really it's the next best thing to having my own bike. I absolutely love it, I wouldn't miss an opportunity ever." 

Tandem Trekkers is now looking for new volunteers to deal with the rising demand. There's more information on the group's website.