Cyclists ride out for Hannah’s Holiday Home

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CYCLISTS turned out in force to take part in the annual Denmead Cycle Ride.

About 200 took to the saddle to brave 10-mile, 20-mile or 35-mile routes through the South Downs to raise money for charity.

Dozens more visitors gathered at the Harvest Home pub to enjoy bands, a barbecue, an auction and a raffle.

Organiser Mike Thwaites, 67, said the event had been held each year since 2000.

He said: ‘It’s moved on from being just a cycle ride to a village event.

‘It gets great support and people would miss it if it wasn’t there.’

Mr Thwaites said he expected more than £5,000 would be raised for Hannah’s Holiday Home Appeal and Myeloma UK.

Mike Pearson, 53, of Denmead, has taken part in the bike ride every year except for one.

He said: ‘This is one of those events that’s done for a good cause and it’s for all ages.

‘It’s one of the those traditional events that’s well-supported every year.’

Samantha Smith of Copnor, was taking part in the cycle for the first time. The 34-year-old did the 35-mile ride. She said: ‘I cycle quite a bit, and this route should be quite a challenge considering the route.

‘Cycling has got more popular over the last 10 years or so – there are more facilities and events like this for families. And it’s something almost everybody can do. Not everybody can run but they can get on a bike.’

Martyn Evans, 66, of Ledbury, was taking part for a friend.

He said: ‘I have a friend from Fareham who suffers from a similar disease to Myeloma so we’re riding to support her. She’s cycling as well, on the back of a tandem with her husband.’

Mr Thwaites said the ride had grown each year.

He said: ‘It started with three of us who were keen cyclists, one of which was Mike Bartholomew.

‘We thought it would be a good idea to have a ride for the charity Langstone Sailability.

‘We usually choose a different charity to support every year.

‘More and more people are coming along even if they don’t cycle.’

Musicians who performed included Fay Wray, Denmead Brass, Bex, and This Way Up and the Lost Star Souls.

Hannah’s Holiday Home Appeal organises breaks at a holiday park for people who have lost a family member. Myeloma UK raises money to fight a rare form of cancer.




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