Starbeck vicar raises £1,000 on two wheels

Rev Francis Wainaina of St Andrews Starbeck, with his wife Elaine  in front of a poster promoting their  Starbeck to Munich  cycle to raise funds for the church.

Rev Francis Wainaina of St Andrews Starbeck, with his wife Elaine in front of a poster promoting their Starbeck to Munich cycle to raise funds for the church.

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The vicar of Starbeck, the Rev Francis Wainaina and his wife Elaine made a jubilant return after cycling more than 1,000 miles to raise funds for Starbeck community centre.

Mr and Mrs Wainaina set off to Zurich on May 1 and cycled the entire length of the Rhine on a bicycle built for two.

“I was amazed the bike got there in one piece,” said Mr Wainaina. “I set it up right there and then in the airport before we had even got through security, it was our only transport .”

For most of the trip the couple stayed in youth hostels and told people they met about their challenge.

“We met someone else cycling the Rhine in Holland but no-one doing the whole route.

“One hostel we stayed in even gave us back our money to put to the fund which was very kind.”

The couple raised £1,000 for Starbeck Welcome community centre currently being built alongside St Andrew’s Church in Starbeck.

“The trip was very worth while as the people of Starbeck have been fantastic.

“That is what Starbeck Welcome will be for, the whole community.”

Although the couple avoided any punctures on their journey they did manage to get lost a few times.

“Even with all modern technology we still got lost.

“Travelling from Basel to Strasbourg we thought it would be 83 miles, but it ended up being 97.

“But we still made it there by tea time!”

Mr Wainaina is already planning the couple’s next tandem adventure. He said: “I appreciated the time spent together on the trip.”