Sheffield hospital bike parade praised by Katie Melua

James Toseland along with his wife Katie Melua delivery a special East Egg to Eric Burton
James Toseland along with his wife Katie Melua delivery a special East Egg to Eric Burton
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CHART-TOPPING singer Katie Melua praised an “amazing” parade of big-hearted bikers through Sheffield today.

The pair wed last year and spent time talking to young patients in the hospital after the procession of more than 1,000 bikers arrived this morning.

Katie, well known for her hit single Nine Million Bicycles, told The Star: “We came up to Doncaster yesterday from London.

“It’s my second year at the Easter egg run, it is just amazing.

“It is so lovely because so many bikers take part and drive over for it.

“It gives the kids in hospital something to look forward to, they think it’s really exciting.

“We’ve just been talking to one little boy Eric and he loved it.”

That little boy was four-year-old Eric Burton, who was hoping to go home from an orthopaedic ward after reconstructive surgery on his hip and femur following an MRSA infection.

Brave Eric – who has also had open heart surgery because of complications following a premature birth – even persuaded James to let him ride on the back of his bike one day.

The tot said: “James said I could go on his motorbike.

“The bikers were cool, I saw one dressed as Bananaman and a Batman.

“My favourite was the one James was on.”

The parade of mean machines, trikes and sidecars roared through Sheffield city centre, past the hospital then into Weston Park, with many riders waving flags or sporting bunny ears.

James signed shirts for crowds of fans and also auctioned off a giant Easter egg, donated by Team Roberts in Denaby, for £55.

Kevin Ludlam, secretary of the Three Shires Honda Owners Club, which organises the run, said: “We are very pleased with the turnout today.

“Some people have come a long way.

“It’s brilliant to have James with us and Katie as well - he brings in all the ladies and she attracts the blokes!

“James will spend hours seeing the kids in the hospital, he is great with them.

“We’d also like to thank South Yorkshire Police who have been fantastic again, we wouldn’t be able to run the event without them.”

Around £5,000 was raised for the children’s hospital charity at the event.

- See tomorrow’s Star for more pictures and the full story.