Lands End by bike
This time Harry went from John O'Groats to Lands End on the handlebars of a bike !
Special congratulations to the participants of the 'John O'Groat's to Lands End' bike ride. Three local Evesham men rode the length of the country to raise funds for The Tracy Sollis Leukaemia Trust. Paul Edmondson, Oli Steward and Nick Berry commenced peddling on Monday 16th April 2007 and aimed to cover 1,000 miles in 10 days. They reached Lands End at 2.30pm on Wednesday 25th April. There was a welcoming party of approximately 60 people waiting at the finishing line, which included friends, family and The Trust's Founder Member, Sue Sollis. The men arrived tired but cheerful, having raised in excess of five thousand pounds.
About Bikes from Blackminster, Nr Evesham provided considerable support by not only donating three top of the range 'TREK' bikes, plus cycling gear, but also member of staff Ollie Steward!
The intrepid threesome were easily spotted by their sign written back up van, kindly supplied by The Best of Evesham Ltd. The van was driven by local businessman Mr Michael Rushby of Smart Beauty
Several local companies from the Evesham area also offered their support for the bike ride. Sinclair Transport supplied fuel for the van and Apollo Graphics provided the vehicle signage. Other companies lending their assistance were Evesham Self Drive, Tom Cook Carpet and Flooring, Allen Gears Ltd, and Chris Tallis Agricultural Machinery.
The event was to raise money for state-of-the-art intravenous pumps which will enable local hospital staff to run a more efficient service. The pumps cost £3,000 each. An amazing total of over £5,000 was raised making more than enough to purchase an Intravenous Pump for the Worcester Royal Hospital. The pump was presented by the participants to Charge Nurse Peter James at the Trust's AGM held in May 2008. A big thank you to all sponsors.
Bike Riders Tales:
Sunday 15/04/07 - the journey has begun! We have flown to Aberdeen where Mike will meet us with the support van, to take us the rest of the way up to John O'Groats. The real fun starts tomorrow when, after a phone catch up with Radio Wyvern, we set off for the first day of cycling 100 miles - bring it on!
Monday 16/04/07 - John O'Groats to Alness. We went to get a photo by the famous John O'Groats sign and would you believe it they've taken it down to be painted! Luckily we did manage to find another so we do have proof of where we set off from!! It's been hard work with a strong head wind which slowed us down - the first 103 miles taking us just under 8 hours. We're all VERY happy to reach the first B&B and tick off day one!
Tuesday 17/4/07 - Alness to Fort William. A much better day weather wise - although raining it's not been as windy which made for easier cycling. We followed the route along the Loch's (there was no sign of Nessie!) with the plan being to cover 83 miles and finish for the day in Fort William. However, we all felt okay and had made good time so did an extra 10 miles to make 93 covered in total today. This will make tomorrow a bit easier as we know there's a big hill climb to do.
Wednesday 18/4/07- Fort William to Clydebank. We started the day with a 2,000 ft climb over 9 and a half miles, to the top of Glencoe. Continued through the Highlands and rode the length of Lock Lomond, where Paul fell off his bike when he was in a mood with the others about riding too fast - damn that gravel trap!! Tomorrow might be smelly as none of us fancy the look of the communal showers in the Glasgow Youth Hostel!!!
Thursday 19/4/07 - Clydebank to Lockerbie. Left Glasgow in torrential rain and proceeded to get lost in the one way system for 30 minutes - we had to stop at the police station to ask for directions!! Eventually got out and followed the back road to Lockerbie - it seems the route to England really is downhill! We had a great run so carried on to do an extra 15 miles finishing in Gretna Green and making 93 miles in total today - bring on England tomorrow!!
Friday 20/4/07- Lockerbie to Lancaster. Left Lockerbie and drove over to Gretna where we finished yesterday. After the predictable photo of the 3 of us getting married we set off for England!! Conditions probably couldn't have been much worse in the morning with torrential rain and wind for over 2 hours. After a hearty lunch the weather improved and we set off once more deeper into England. After a couple of minor detours due to getting confused with signs we arrived in Lancaster. Due to the 3 of us still feeling good we carried on ahead and finished 16 miles further on in Garstang.
Saturday 21/4/07 - Lancaster to Whitchurch. Another good day after being spoilt staying the night at Paul's folks in Blackpool. Flew through Preston (always a good thing) and Warrington but impaired by traffic, although got to Whitchurch (where we are stopping tonight) and decided to carry on towards Telford to knock a few miles off tomorrow. 86 miles in total today and Evesham tomorrow - can't wait to sleep in our own beds for the night!!
Sunday 22/4/07 - Whitchurch to Evesham. A busy day today with lots of stops, but in between we were flying! First stop at Fenn Green where we had a great welcome, drinks and sandwiches. Second stop at Pinvin for a quick natter with Ann & Rob and to meet up with Adrian & Co who joined us on their bikes, and then on to Evesham to meet Sue & the gang and pose for photo's! We went on to finish the day in Tewkesbury and then after a quick dash home to change we popped over to Gordon Giltrap's concert at The Fleece. Thank you so much to everyone who waved us on along the way - it was a real boost and made the day go much faster. Another 86 miles covered and only 3 days to go - hooray!!
Monday 23/4/07 - Evesham to Bridgewater. Left Tewkesbury this morning and followed the road through Gloucester and Bristol, with two us enjoying the fact that Oli had a hangover!! Made good time and carried on past our stop for the night (Bridgwater) to finish in Wellington - 98 miles in total today. Hopefully we will do about the same tomorrow to finish in Bodmin - the plan being to leave a shorter day on Wednesday. 8 down 2 to go - the end is in sight!
Tuesday 24/4/07 - Bridgewater to Launceston. Well it's been another tough one today - lots of hills which slowed us down a bit, however we are still ahead of schedule and have managed to reduce tomorrows cycling to 60 miles. We sailed past where we were supposed to be stopping tonight at lunchtime, but managed to re-arrange acommodation (thanks to Mike) so we don't have to go back on ourselves in the van! Can't believe this time tomorrow we'll have done it but we're all looking forward to finishing as the knees are starting to hurt now!
Wednesday 25/4/07 - Launceston to Landsend. Apologies for not updating this yesterday but we were all in the pub!! Arrived safely in Lands End at 2.30pm, to a great welcoming party. Possibly one of the toughest days we've had riding - Cornwall is really not nice to cycle through, however it was all worthwhile and the sense of achievement is brilliant. We will be emailing an update with the total raised as soon as we have some idea of the exact amount, but we know it's over £3,000 so THANK YOU to you all.
Thursday 26/4/07- GO HOME!