Lindsi Bluemel, the chairman of Southampton Cycling Campaign who suffered life-threatening head injuries in a freak accident in Bournemouth last month is back home as she continues her recovery and itching to get back on her bike – although doctors have told her she won’t be able to get back in the saddle till the New Year.
Mrs Bluemel, aged 56, had suffered head injuries including a fractured eye socket and bruising to her brain three weeks ago when she came off her bike after riding over a 5-metre strip of plastic lying across a cycle lane adjacent to the westbound carriageway of the A338.
Normally, she would have been wearing a cycle helmet, but hers had been stolen two days earlier and she had not yet had an opportunity to replace it – although whether it would have prevented that eye injury is of course open to question.
Happily, the mother of five is now recovering at home and her daughter, Rhiannon, aged 21 and a student nurse, spoke to the Daily Echo about the progress she is making.
But surrounded by her five children, she is on the road to recovery – and desperate to get back on her bike.
“We are lucky she is okay,” she said. “It could have been so much worse. It was scary. She was really sick when she first went into hospital and it could have gone either way. We have been told she will make a complete recovery.
“Her balance is still quite bad, she is really really tired and she has got double vision but she is really glad to be at home and grateful to everyone for their support and kindness. It is a long road ahead but mum is doing really well.”
The newspaper said that Rhiannon, together with her four brothers, were constant visitors while their mother was in intensive care for six days and for the five further days she spent in hospital.
She is now being treated as an outpatient by Southampton's brain injury rehabilitation team, with doctors confident that her recovery will not require surgical intervention.
Now, Ms Bluemel is eager to get back on her bike, as her daughter explains: “She has already started talking about cycling again but doctors say she won’t be able to until the New Year."
Police are reportedly still investigating the incident, in an attempt to discover the full circumstances behind it.
Simon has been news editor at road.cc since 2009, reporting on 10 editions and counting of pro cycling’s biggest races such as the Tour de France, stories on issues including infrastructure and campaigning, and interviewing some of the biggest names in cycling. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, his background has proved invaluable in reporting on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, and the bike industry. He splits his time between London and Cambridge, and loves taking his miniature schnauzer Elodie on adventures in the basket of her Elephant Bike.