Nick Taylor is a Kier deputy roads manager for highway pavement and improvement design based at the Stafford Park Office in Telford, Shropshire. He works on the Area 9 Highways England Progressive Asset Deliver (PAD) contract. Nick cycled the gruelling Prudential London 100-mile cycle event on Sunday 4 August, in support of Antony Nolan and to help raise awareness of the stem cell register. Here, Nick talks about his involvement with the Anthony Nolan Trust.
“I’ve worked at Kier since 2014 and am currently the deputy roads manager for highways pavement and improvement design. I’m responsible for an annual portfolio of design work in excess of £50m managing four design teams; developing highway improvement (Designated Fund) projects, Roads Investment Strategy (RIS) schemes, cycle schemes, carriageway maintenance schemes and Traffic Signal Schemes for Highways England’s Area 9 PAD contract.
In 1989, I saw a TV interview with Shirley Nolan (Anthony’s Mother) explaining how her son had died whilst waiting for a suitable stem cell donor. The interview really touched me and I decided to join the Anthony Nolan register in 1989. Within months I was matched with a Leukaemia sufferer, Peter from Yorkshire. My match was confirmed, and I underwent an operation to extract my bone marrow which was later transferred to Peter, who subsequently went on to make a full recovery.
Following on from my first donation I was inactive on the register for 15 years. It’s a 450/1 chance of an individual’s bone marrow matching a complete stranger’s so to match with a second patient is extremely rare. However, against all the odds, I was matched again in 2004 with a lady from the Home Counties. Unfortunately, the outcome to this wasn’t a positive one.
Both donations have affirmed my reason for being on the stem cell register. It’s so important and life is so precious, I have continued to stay registered as a donor, but the chance of a third match is incredibly unlikely and so, I am now focusing my efforts on raising money for the Anthony Nolan blood cancer charity, for every £40 raised a new recruit can be processed onto the register. This year, I’m taking place in The Prudential Ride London a 100 mile cycle event which starts at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in East London, we then ride out into the Surrey countryside along a route made famous by the world’s best cyclists in the London 2012 Olympics and finishing on the Mall near Buckingham Palace.
It has never been easier to join the register; a simple swab test will provide all the relevant information to confirm whether you are a match. The stem cell donation process has also replaced the old Bone Marrow harvest method which was carried out under general anaesthetic. This new process involves sitting watching television for around four hours with a needle in each arm whilst they collect your life saving stem cells.”
To find out more about Anthony Nolan, visit: www.anthonynolan.org
If you wish to sponsor Nick, please visit: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Nick-Taylor-bloodsweatandgears