Thorne store staff rally round for Jack

Jack Allen with mum Julie, dad David and One Stop store manager Liz Garth, whose store is raising money for 13 year old Jack, who is autistic and epileptic, to buy a specially adapted bike. Picture: Paul David Drabble
Jack Allen with mum Julie, dad David and One Stop store manager Liz Garth, whose store is raising money for 13 year old Jack, who is autistic and epileptic, to buy a specially adapted bike. Picture: Paul David Drabble

Staff and customers of Thorne store are rallying round to raise cash to buy a disabled local boy a specially adapted bike.

Autistic and epileptic Jack Allen, 13, of Fenland Road, Thorne attends Stone Hill Special School in Scawsby and is a regular face at the town’s One Stop Shop on Miller Lane.

Store manager Liz Garth, 51, has been so taken with Jack that when he mentioned that he would like a new bicycle, she decided to do her bit to help.

She said: “He’s lovely, he’s just a lovely child and he needs a bike and we want to help him get one.

“He comes in and he is so polite and well behaved. He is just one of those kids.

“He amazes me, in fact I am in awe of him really.

“I’ve never seen him upset, he’s always got a smile on his face. He’s part of our community and it’s about time people did things like this for the community.”

Jack’s mum Julie, 40, said: “Jack has got speech but it’s not very good, you can have a small conversation with him.

“When he was in mainstream school they did all they could for him, but he has thrived in special school.

“He needs a bike that’s specially made for disabled people, it is easier to pedal and steer, it’s a realy sturdy bike, it’s more like a tricycle.

“He finds it easier to cycle one of these. He hasn’t the muscle tone or strength to pedal a normal bike. We have priced one up at £500.”

She added: “The One Stop Shop is our local shop and when Jake goes in he talks to all the staff and they all adore him. He told them one day that we were going to Sandall Beat Woods Cycle Club and he would like one of those bikes but they were expensive.

“The manager said he would fundraise for us to help us out. We were suprised and shocked, we don’t like asking for help, but the generosity of the people going into the shop is already overwhelming. “Some people have gone in and made donations of £20 and £30 at a time. The community spirit is fantastic.”

Prizes up for grabs are - 1st £30, 2nd £15 and 3rd a meal for two at The Belmont.