Cyclists celebrate reaching Holyrood

The team at the start. (s)

The team at the start. (s)

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Twenty seven cyclists have completed a tough 220 mile, four day cycle challenge from Harrogate to Edinburgh and have already raised over £25,000 for children’s charity Barnardo’s.

The team were given a great send off from the courtyard of Ripley Castle on Wednesday June 15 by both the Castle staff who had provided teas and coffees at the start and students from Dr B’s Restaurant and Coffee Shop on the Knaresborough road, who handed out plentiful supplies of flapjack that they had made along with and special personal notes of thanks to keep everyone’s spirits up on the long journey.

The ride followed quiet country lanes heading north from Ripley taking in forests, moors and meandering rivers and streams, stopping in the villages and small towns along the way.

Trisha Hughes from Leeds Road, Harrogate who took part said: “It was a significant personal challenge for me and a great achievement. The hills were tough but we cycled through spectacular countryside. I arrived in Edinburgh exhausted but exhilarated. Being seen off by the young adults from Dr B’s and their special messages was a very moving reminder of why we were all there and helped motivate me every day of the challenge.”

The team were well supported on the event with snack stops along the way, a welcome lunch break as well as dinner and a full English breakfast before the next day’s ride. Andrew Finlay from High Birstwith explained: “The attention to detail in the organisation was fantastic as was the encouragement not only from the support team but between individuals. There was the overwhelming sense that we were all in it together and that we succeeded collectively – in fact I’m more impressed with some others’ achievement, than my own.”

Team member John Lennon from Oakdale in Harrogate had trained hard in the months and weeks in the run up to the event: “It was the first time I’ve ever done anything like this. You need to put the mileage in and it’s good to link up with others for your training but it was definitely achievable. I didn’t quite realise what I was capable of with some training and determination.”

Support is still coming in for the team now that they have completed their challenge. Barnardo’s fundraiser, Mick Helm said: “We’re delighted with the efforts and support of all the riders and organiser, Julie Patmore. All of their hard work will bring benefits to the region’s most disadvantaged children by helping us to continue our vital work.”

To support this year’s team or find out how to join next year’s ride contact Julie Patmore on 07803 037439 or email julie@xceedevents.co.uk