Active family set to cycle every street in Ipswich to raise money for St Helen’s Playgroup garden project

Anna is pictured here with her 3 year old daughter Agnes, Ben Gummer and children and parents from t

Anna is pictured here with her 3 year old daughter Agnes, Ben Gummer and children and parents from the playgroup at the start of the ride. Copyright Anglia Picture Agency - Credit: Ashley Pickering/Anglia Picture Agency

An active family will be undertaking an exploratory cycling challenge this winter, as they aim to ride down every street in Ipswich.

Anna Matthews, 40, from Norwich Road, was inspired to undertake the challenge after attending a Cycle Ipswich meeting, where Ipswich MP Ben Gummer told of his experience of cycling down every street in the town to raise money for East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices in 2010.

In an effort for her children to get to know the area they live in better, Mrs Matthews, her husband Cliff, 58, and four children Lizzy, 12, Alex, 10, Seren, 8 and Agnes, 3, will be cycling more than 400 miles in total.

Throughout the challenge, the eco-friendly family who gave up their car three years ago, will be raising money to landscape a piece of disused garden at St Helen’s Playgroup, which Agnes attends.

Mrs Matthews said: “We don’t actually know Ipswich that well and I thought it would be quite fun to show them how varied the streets are.

“We are trying to raise £8,000 for the garden, so it makes sense to make it a sponsored event.

“The playgroup has been there for 25 years, and it will be a great way to make people aware of the space which will be used by children of the playgroup and St Helen’s Church.”

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Mr Gummer added: “Anna – and especially Agnes – are real heroes to be cycling to raise money for St Helen’s Playgroup. I know because I’ve done it – every road in Ipswich adds up to quite some distance.

“St Helen’s Playgroup is a lovely and established playgroup in the centre of town, and they want to make more use of the green space around the church.

“Not only will this money go to help the playgroup improve their setting, it will make more attractive a corner of one of our oldest churchyards in the town – something from which all Ipswich people will benefit.”

The family began their journey on December 19, and will be tracking the streets by GPS throughout December and January so that people can track their progress online at

Anyone wishing to donate can do so online at Are you doing something different to raise money for a good cause? Write to 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, email or call 01473 324788.