A generous group from Penrith, who began walking to fundraise for the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation to support a friend with cancer, have set themselves a tough new two-wheeled challenge.
Fundraiser, Martyn Haughan
Tomorrow, (25 May), Martyn Haughan and a group of 30 friends will set off from Penrith Clock Tower and cycle the 320 miles to London, ending their ride at Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament.
The challenge, aptly named Clock to Clock, is the third fundraising venture Martyn has organised after his friend, John Raynes, was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
Martyn, aged 44 from Penrith, says: “We started fundraising for the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation because our friend John was receiving treatment at the Freeman Hospital in Newcastle.
“We thought we’d support John and walk the 75 mile route he was travelling regularly from Penrith to Tyneside and raise some money for charity along the way.
“That was back in 2014 and it was such a positive experience that we repeated the walk a couple of years later. Everyone’s legs were a bit older by then though and we decided that was it for us.
“We’re not really sure how, but the ‘never again’ hasn’t lasted long! I think it’s fair to say most of the group are not especially strong cyclists so, even with the training we’ve been doing, it’s going to be extremely hard. We do have a couple of more experienced riders on board and we’re hoping their advice will be useful.”
Martyn and his family recently joined Lady Elsie, to celebrate our Foundation’s 10th anniversary and took the opportunity to update her on the group’s plans.
Martyn Haughan and his family celebrating our 10th anniversary with Lady Elsie
Martyn adds: “It was fantastic meeting Lady Elsie and being with other fundraisers on such a special occasion.
“We know this ride is going to be hard but nowhere near as hard as John’s fight with cancer. Thankfully, he’s been given the all-clear and will be driving the Clock to Clock support vehicle for us. I think he’s going to enjoy being the only one of us without a sore backside.”
Clock to Clock begins in Penrith on 25th May. The first overnight stop is Lancaster (60 miles), then Stoke (100 miles), Towcester (100 miles) before finishing in London on 28th May (70 miles).
In total, including the two walks (Penrith to Newcastle in 2014 and Carlisle Hospital to Newcastle in 2016, the group are hoping to take their overall charity fundraising total to more than £50,000 with the Clock to Clock challenge.
To donate to Clock to Clock, please visit www.justgiving.com/clocktoclock