Katie Crabtree had no hesitation when she was asked at a meeting of the Just Good Friends companionship group what would be her ultimate wish.
‘To meet Carl Fogarty’ was the answer - and thanks to Just Good Friends founder Bev Sykes, her dream has come true.
Katie, 78, has followed former world superbike champion Carl’s fortunes since seeing him ride in the Isle of Man TT more than two decades ago.
Memories of that day came flooding back when Katie and fellow members of Just Good Friends were asked for suggestions for their wish, or ‘bucket’ list as part of a new innovation by Bev, who founded the group four years ago.
“I’ll never forget just how impressed I was by the bikes and the riders and Carl in particular,” said Katie, of Fairview Avenue, St Annes.
“He’s a great sportsman and the bikes going round the circuit at the speed they did was a brilliant sight.
“Bev asked about wishes and that was the one for me. It’s brilliant to meet him.”
The Just Good Friends bucket list is the opportunity to make lifelong dreams come true - and members of the 150-strong companionship group have been quick to make the most of it.
Wishes have included flying a kite, taking a ride on the Flying Scotsman, dancing with someone from the TV show Strictly Come Dancing, meeting tenor Alfie Boe and taking a hot air balloon ride - not bad for a group whose membership generally ranges from 60 upwards.
Bev said: “I call it the bucket list’ - something we have always wanted to do before we kick the bucket’ - and when I suggested it to the members of the group, the response was amazing.
“They came up with all sort of brilliant ideas - including Katie’s, whose wish left us all a bit taken aback at first to be honest, but thanks to Carl, we did it for her.
“I thought of the ‘bucket list’ idea after my daughter Gemma absolutely delighted me by arranging for the dance group Diversity to come to St Annes and surprise me for the TV show Surprise Surprise.
“She knew I was a big fan and it was a wonderful total shock - a brilliant feeling that I will never forget. thought it would be nice for the Just Good Friends members to sample the same feeling.”
Katie, who worked as an auxiliary nurse at the old St Annes Hospital, added: “Just Good Friends has been brilliant for me and I really look forward to the meetings.”
Just Good Friends, which started with a handful of members in September 2012, holds meetings at St Annes Palace, St Annes Pensioners Hall, Lytham Methodist Church and the Victoria pub in St Annes as well as Sunday lunches at the St Ives Hotel.
More from Bev on 07557 734233 after 6pm.