Annual cycle raises thousands of pounds for Rowans Hospice

From left, Sue Leonard, Carol Green, Julia Maile and Caroline Tibbs ahead of the 2018 Rowans Ride. Picture: David George
From left, Sue Leonard, Carol Green, Julia Maile and Caroline Tibbs ahead of the 2018 Rowans Ride. Picture: David George

HUNDREDS of people took to the streets of Portsmouth on their bicycles this weekend, in support of a well-loved hospice.

The seventh annual Rowans Ride saw people from across the region pedalling as far as Petersfield in support of Rowans Hospice, which is based in Waterlooville.

People took part in the event for many different reasons – some being keen cyclists wanting to support a local cause, others in memory of someone supported by the hospice.

One of those was 54-year-old Terry Hunt, from Horndean.

Terry lost his wife Adele in May this year – but says that the support given by Rowans Hospice is what helped everyone through such a difficult time.

He arrived for the ride with a group of 14 people, all family members and friends of Adele.

He said: 'When my wife died back in May the Rowans Hospice looked after everyone and were such a big part of the whole process.

'This ride is all about giving back to them for the brilliant work that they do – I don't think we would have got through it all without them so I can't ever thank them enough.

'Adele's nickname was Tinkerbell so we've got our own Tinkerbells on our handlebars.'

Although this year's event was the seventh Rowan's Ride, for people like Sue Leonard, 56, this was their first event.

Sue, from Rowlands Castle, cycled alongside her friends Carol Green, Julia Maile and Caroline Tibbs.

Sue said: 'We haven't done the Rowans Ride before but we've done a couple of other fundraisers for them in the past.

'It's great to be able to do something like this to support a brilliant local charity.'

Rowans Hospice chief executive Ruth White said: ‘The ride is really important to the hospice.This is our seventh ride and we’ve raised £277,000 in that time.

‘It’s a really significant income that goes a long way to supporting the hospice care we provide in Portsmouth and the rest of Hampshire; we can’t thank people enough for supporting us.’