Young Harrogate stroke survivor meets MP

Stroke survivor Nathan Ridgard meets with MP Andrew Jones (s).
Stroke survivor Nathan Ridgard meets with MP Andrew Jones (s).

A stroke survivor has met MP Andrew Jones to raise awareness of stroke in young people and discuss his personal experience.

Nathan Ridgard, 37, from Harrogate, had a stroke two weeks before Christmas in 2012. He had a second stroke on New Year’s Eve 2012 and finally suffered a haemorrhage after he was discharged.

The meeting with the MP saw Mr Ridgard discuss his own experience and after being cared for in Harrogate, suggest how support for stroke survivors and carers across North Yorkshire could be improved.

As general manager for Micro Scooters, Mr Ridgard is also keen to involve his work to fundraise for the Stroke Association and encouraged Mr Jones to back a new fundraising event.

He is currently planning Scoot for Stroke, which is likely to take place in Harrogate in May. Families and people of all ages will be able to complete a short circuit on scooters, combined with activities around the idea of a healthy lifestyle.

As the Vice Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Stroke, Mr Jones says he is a strong supporter of the Stroke Association and actively campaigns to raise awareness and funds.

He said: “Thousands of people across Harrogate are affected by stroke and it is a major cause of adult disability. Almost one third of strokes occur in people under 65 years. Nathan is particularly passionate about raising awareness of this devastating disease in people of working age and it was fascinating to hear his story.

“The Stroke Association can provide support to stroke survivors like Nathan to make their best possible recovery and to families adjusting to a life after stroke.”

Mr Ridgard added: “As a young person who had a stroke I initially thought my life was over. I now want to tell people they are not alone and they can improve. I’m keen to help in any small way so other stroke survivors are not as scared about the future as I was. It’s hugely important that we raise stroke awareness and highlight that young people are suffering strokes.”