Year long ride aims to supply charity with 500 new bikes

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MANY people dream of travelling the world – doing the whole journey on a bike is a different challenge altogether.

This is the task facing James Davis, from Emsworth, and his girlfriend Emily Conrad-Pickles as they ride from London to Cape Town.

The year-long journey will see the pair cross through three continents, visiting no less than 28 countries on the way to the vibrant South African city.

James, a former Oaklands School student, said: ‘Emily and myself both have an adventurous streak, and we have always wanted to embark on a life-changing experience that would also have a positive impact.’

The couple are raising money for the World Bicycle Relief charity, which provides specially designed bikes for rural communities across Africa, called Buffalo Bikes. James and Emily set themselves a target of raising enough money to supply the charity with the funds to build more than 500 bikes, aiming for an overall total of £50,000.

‘World Bicycle Relief is an incredibly worthy cause and we hope we can both raise awareness of the power of bicycles, both close to home and across rural Africa,’ added James.

The trip will be completely self-supported, as the pair will carry everything they need for the journey with them, including tents, bike parts, clothes and medical supplies.

James said: ‘I am under no illusion as to how tough this expedition will be but I can’t wait to get started.

‘Travelling from London to Cape Town by bike is a lifetime adventure for me, but for those in rural Africa, simply having a bike can be life-changing.’

Before the pair started their journey this week they were greeted by fellow former Oaklands student and Portsmouth North MP, Penny Mordaunt, at the Houses of Parliament. Ms Mordaunt showed her support for the brave couple and said she would be keeping a close eye on their progress.

Follow the journey at london2capetown.org.