Six cycling from London to Paris to raise funds for Ipswich housing charity
- Credit: Louise Rackstraw
Six very amateur cyclists are preparing to take on a challenge spanning two countries, four days and 309 miles to raise funds for an Ipswich charity that helps vulnerable people move on from supported housing.
Mark, Alex, Tory, George, Kieran and Becky are the six cyclists journeying from London to Paris this summer in an effort to raise £5,000 for The Stone Foundation.
Some are co-workers at the Mavam Group, some are friends and family who were convinced to join the challenge, but all want to raise much-needed funds to ensure the charity can keep providing support to people who need help stepping out on their own.
The team will take four days to cycle the route through England and France, leaving on July 20 and arriving in Paris on July 24.
Speaking about what he expects from the challenge, Kieran Sturgess said: "It's hard to choose one word specifically.
"I'm not nervous or worried, more excited, but I'd be lying if I said I was ready.
"The whole journey takes four days to do, but none of us typically have four days in a row where we can practise the whole thing, so the first time we do the whole distance it'll be the ride itself.
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"The saving grace for me is that we'll only have to do everything once, we only have to go the one way. If there's a big hill, I know as I'm riding up it that I don't have to turn around in Paris and ride back to London."
When deciding to take on the two-country 300-mile trip, the team picked something that would be a challenge - though Kieran says it wasn't the hardest one discussed.
But despite training through British winter, with wind and rain and snow, the team are "definitely motivated".
They want to give as much as they can to The Stone Foundation, which sources accommodation for people who have poor credit history or low or no income, as well as putting on a range of teaching courses from financial stability to cooking on a budget.
Kieran added: "The cost-of-living crisis has made it even more important to support this cause than when we first signed up, to be honest, so we're all just trying to go further and harder each week."