A YAPTON couple who both suffered horrific injuries in a freak cycling accident have paid tribute to the ‘amazing’ local hospital service.
Nicola and Mark Godwin, of Park Road, were out riding with friends near Eartham Woods in December when they skidded into each other on an oil spill on the road.
The pair were knocked unconscious and Mark suffered six broken ribs while Nicola’s right collarbone was virtually torn out.
“It was absolute agony, my collarbone basically got ripped out which is probably the worst thing you can do,” said Nicola, who two months later is still off work and in pain.
“Mark was off work for three weeks and he’s self-employed so that’s been hard. Both our helmets were smashed up and had we not been wearing them our injuries could have been life-threatening.”
Nicola underwent surgery at St Richard’s Hospital, in Chichester, on New Year’s Eve to have a plate, screws and a hook put into her injured shoulder.
Nicola works as a fundraiser for St Richard’s and Worthing Hospital so is far more used to raising money for vital equipment than relying on it herself.
“The treatment we’ve both had, from the ambulance and hospital services to our aftercare has been unbelievable,” she said. “People are fairly quick to bash our health service but it’s completely free and the staff who work at our hospitals are truly fantastic.
“Dr Hill is one of the country’s best surgeons and he operated on me on New Year’s Eve.
“I was in hospital for four days recovering and in severe pain but I never once saw a member of staff lose their patience. They do so much to help people above what their job requires.”
Nicola has been using a hydropool to aid her recovery, but with only one in the whole area she is considering an ambitious, multi-million pound project to fund a second one.