Imagine walking across a windy airfield, knowing that in a few minutes you will be strapped to the wing of an aeroplane, speeding and climbing through the air at up to 130 miles an hour.  Now imagine taking on the same challenge without vision, with weakness in your right arm and struggling with profound cognitive disability... 

On Sunday 16th September, Keith Lauder will take on that very challenge, and all to support the local charity that continues to support him, Headway Nottingham.

Keith Lauder completing his Lands End to John OGroats Challenge

After sustaining his brain injury in a motorcycle accident 33 years ago, Keith continues to experience the residual effects of his accident, not least almost total sight loss, but that doesn't stop him taking on breath-taking feats including tandem cycling across France, riding an Ostrich in South Africa and driving a BMW around Brand's Hatch.  But he'll conquer his biggest challenge this September, alongside his nephew, Anthony Longman, by completing an aeroplane wing walk at 500ft! 

Asked why he's taking on his epic challenge, Keith explained:

I want to do it because every 90 seconds someone in the UK is admitted to hospital because of a brain injury.  There's so many people like me out there who need help from Headway Nottingham now and in the future, and I want to make sure the charity is alive and kicking for years to come.  People ask me if I'm scared and feel like I'm in the dark, but I don't.  Without Headway I would be sitting at home, listening to my stories and bored.  That's why I'm raising money for them.

Headway Nottingham's Services Manager, Charlotte Leask said:

"Keith is a real inspiration to all of us here at the centre and we're so grateful that he and Anthony are taking on a wing walk to raise much-needed funds for us!  We believe that no one should live a life that is defined by disability.  With the right support people struggling with profound physical and cognitive disabilities, as well as behavioural problems, can achieve for themselves and feel hopeful for the future.  Every penny that Keith and Anthony raise will help us make sure we continue to rehabilitate and support people with their complex disabilities and, who without our help often struggle to play a part in their communities or achieve to their potential. 

"It's so important that we have the support of our local community because brain injury could happen to any of us at any time.  Keith and Anthony's support will leave an important legacy for Nottingham and we're so excited to be part of their amazing achievement.  They're so brave!"

The team at Headway Nottingham use varied rehabilitative workshops including Therapeutic Art, Dramatherapy and Literacy and Numeracy classes to support members to rebuild vital life skills.  Many members have physical disabilities meaning they rely on wheelchairs or walkers to move short distances, but all struggle with 'invisible disabilities' that can affect how they walk, talk, think, understand and plan whilst impacting on behaviour, stealing confidence and independence.  

The team at Headway Nottingham hope that Keith and Anthony's challenge will also raise awareness of brain injury throughout the Nottinghamshire community, to help them reach out to even more of the 3,500 people who sustain head injuries in the county alone.

If you're inspired to support Keith and Anthony's challenge please visit their fundraising page on JustGiving