TV presenter Fern Britton will be joining hundreds of other cyclists in this year’s Chilterns Cycle Challenge, a sponsored bike ride with three route options raising funds for Rennie Grove Hospice Care.
Fern has taken part in the annual event three times previously and is looking forward to stretching her legs in the 35 mile route through the Chilterns on Sunday 20 March.
“I love to cycle and late March is such a lovely time to enjoy the countryside with signs of spring around every corner. I remember the route as challenging but rewarding, not least because your efforts are helping to fund crucial nursing care in patients’ homes. Rennie Grove is a cause close to my heart because it’s a local service and I’ve met some of the nurses. I have so much respect for the work they do to control patients’ symptoms and make them more comfortable. Their support gives family members the chance to enjoy their time together and not just be carers, as well as giving patients the choice to spend their final days at home.”
Rennie Grove hopes around 500 people will follow Fern’s lead and sign up for the Chilterns Cycle Challenge in 2016. Last year, 500 cyclists raised over £30,000 – enough to fund a Hospice at Home nurse for a year.
Fern adds: “Think how amazing it would be to achieve that together: not only can you and your family, friends or colleagues accomplish a huge personal achievement by completing your route of choice, but you can also say that you were part of something that made a difference to thousands of local families affected by cancer and other life-limiting illness.”
The Chilterns Cycle Challenge offers three routes, each starting and finishing in Aylesbury town centre and devised by the charity with extensive input from cycle specialists Cycle Bucks. The routes comprise: a 10k family option using the Gemstone cycle paths around Aylesbury; a 35 mile route that takes cyclists out to Kimble, Longwick and as far as Bledlow Ridge, then back through the Hampdens and Butlers Cross. 75-milers follow this same route, before splitting off to visit villages including Stokenchurch, Ibstone and Fingest, as far east as Latimer before returning back to Aylesbury through Berkhamsted and Wendover.
Entry fees for the Chilterns Cycle Challenge vary according to the route and how much sponsorship you pledge to raise. Costs cover a medal on completion, water along the route, feed stations for those completing the 35 and 75 miles, a fully signed and marshalled route, mechanical support on the day and fundraising support from the charity’s events team. Visit www.renniegrove.org/chilternscycle or call 01442 820740.