A FORMER carpenter who was nearly blinded in an accident at work has forged a new career through his hobby.

Richard Snarr has launched Avon Nordic Trails in Bradford on Avon using some of the compensation for his injuries.

Mr Snarr, 53, of Poulton, Bradford on Avon, lost the sight in his right eye in the accident on Friday, October 13, 2017. He also suffered damage to his left eye when he was hit in the face by a spanner.

The accident happened while he was working on an eye hospital extension for the Rowe veterinary practice at Bradley Stoke.

Mr Snarr said: “I was very lucky to be working in Bristol and was rushed straight to the Bristol Eye Hospital where surgeons operated on me that evening.”

He has since used some of the £100,000 compensation he received to launch his business and pay off his mortgage.

“I am a former runner and tried Nordic walking after my knee joints began to creak,” he said. “Nordic walking uses two poles to help propel you along.

“I had already done two challenges of 50km and 100km after trying Nordic walking as a hobby.

“When I lost some of my sight, advisers suggested I try making a business out of my hobby.”

Before he was injured, Mr Snarr used to be a professional skateboarder as well as a self-employed carpenter.

He has since tried paddle-boarding and open water swimming in the River Avon and the sea off Weymouth.

Mr Snarr uses the Victory Field and Culver Close field in Bradford on Avon to coach people who want to learn.

He is now a registered British Nordic walking instructor and his business is recognised by the International Nordic Walking Association.

“Nordic walking is a very good way of keeping fit. You can burn 50 per cent more calories than walking normally and use 90 per cent of your skeletal muscles.”