Jack shines out on motor project

Fifteen-year-old Jack Carthy at work in the Motor Education Project with Len Wright who is passing on his knowledge

Fifteen-year-old Jack Carthy at work in the Motor Education Project with Len Wright who is passing on his knowledge

First published in Keighley by

A champion bike rider is mentoring fellow teenagers at Keighley’s Motor Education Project.

Fifteen-year-old trials bike ace Jack Carthy helps teach them how to repair and rebuild cars, bikes and Go-karts.

He has been attending the project — an alternative to mainstream education for local youths — for three years.

Like other students he takes normal maths and English lessons alongside time working on a host of old vehicles.

Away from the project he has won eight UK championships as well as a gold medal in the UCI Trials World Youth Games. Jack, who has competed in Belgium, is just one of many students who have found success partly due to their time at the project.

One has become a UK kart racing champion and many have found jobs in vehicle maintenance, including at least one who now runs his own garage.

The Motor Education Project has been running at the former tramshed, on South Street, Keighley, for the past 18 years.

In 2010 it merged with the Joint Activities Service to become JAMES, a charity which now provides activities for more than 2,000 young people a year across the district. JAMES uses activities like sport, art, motor mechanics and community work to help young people keep away from crime, get along with each other and do better in life. Len Wright has passed on his maintenance skills to young people with the Motor Education Project for 20 years.

He said the participants at South Street were young people who had been excluded from mainstream secondary schools.

They had to attend for 39 weeks — the same as normal school — and attendance rates were high.

Mr Wright said his trainees gained confidence and life skills as well as qualifications in motor mechanics.

He said: “Jack Carthy was such a quiet lad. Now he’s come out so much that he helps me and helps with the young ones. They work on a multitude of vehicles. They start on cars that are not going on the road.”

The trainees work up to servicing the project’s minibuses and preparing them for MoTs.

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