Southsea boy with autism to cycle 133 miles to support firefighters charity

Rolf Harris

Appeal court overturns Portsmouth indecent assault conviction against Rolf Harris

0
Have your say

A YOUNG boy with autism is preparing to cycle 133 miles to raise money in aid of the national firefighters charity.

Andrew Impey, from Southsea, will travel from Hampshire up to London while stopping at 29 fire stations on the way.

Andrew Impey and ACO Andy Bowers preparing for the fundraising bike ride. Picture: HFRS

Andrew Impey and ACO Andy Bowers preparing for the fundraising bike ride. Picture: HFRS

His journey will start at Havant Fire Station on Wednesday and end in Barnet two days later.

The 11-year-old decided to take on the challenge after the devastating Grenfell Tower fire in June.

He previously completed a 25-mile bike ride through Hampshire and has visited more than 1,000 fire stations across the UK.

He said: ‘I did a 25-mile bike ride last year and wanted to push myself further.

The horror at Grenfell Tower in London earlier this year reminded us all of the kind of dangerous work firefighters do.

Andrew Impey

‘The horror at Grenfell Tower in London earlier this year reminded us all of the kind of dangerous work firefighters do.

‘It’s great to be able to support such an amazing charity and to do it in such a fun way.’

He will be joined on part of his journey by firefighters including Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service assistant chief officer Andy Bowers.

ACO Bowers rode alongside Andrew for part of his cycling fundraiser last year.

Andrew being made an honorary firefighter during a recent trip to New York. Picture: HFRS

Andrew being made an honorary firefighter during a recent trip to New York. Picture: HFRS

He said: ‘Andrew’s unwavering enthusiasm for the work we do is remarkable as is his fundraising which is for a cause close to our hearts.

‘Andrew is very much a member of our fire service family and I am looking forward to joining him on his second cycling challenge.’

Andrew’s firefighter fundraising started about three years ago when he first visited a fire station and learnt about the service’s life-saving work.

Since then he has transformed his room into a fire station, attended conferences and regularly reads trade press from across the world.

Andrew, left, during his visit to New York. Picture: HFRS

Andrew, left, during his visit to New York. Picture: HFRS

His charity endeavours have raised about £2,000 for charity so far.

His mum Kirstine said: ‘It’s great that Andrew wants to raise money for The Fire Fighters Charity.

‘Over the past few years the fire and rescue community has given so much to Andrew.

‘Andrew’s social skills have improved dramatically. He has also learnt to read and improved his other skills thanks to the support of the fire service.’

To keep track of Andrew on his journey search for the hashtag #OneLadsChallenge on Twitter.

To donate go to his JustGiving page.

Andrew with HFRS chief fire officer Dave Curry. Picture: HFRS

Andrew with HFRS chief fire officer Dave Curry. Picture: HFRS