Dunmow cyclists raise thousands with 50-mile ride

Mencap Bike Ride

Mencap Bike Ride - Credit: Archant

There were “tears, determination and sore bottoms” when 18 cyclists rode 50 miles off-road across the Essex countryside raising over £2,320 and still counting for Mencap.

Despite some of them getting lost, they enjoyed it so much that all of them have said they will do the same again next year – but next time in June so they don’t have to cycle back in the dark.

On Sunday (October 18) the team went along the Flitch Trail from Dunmow and on through Notley and Witham to Heybridge and back. They started at the Flitch Café in the High Street, appropriately with bacon sandwiches, and ended up 10 hours later, back at the Flitch pub. Water was donated by the Co-op and tray bakes by Donningtons.

Organiser, Carole Rose said: “It was amazing. At one point we had two people lost going in one direction and three in the other. There were tears, determination and sore bottoms but we all joined up at the end and everyone said they wanted to do it again. We are very grateful to the businesses which supported us. The Old Ship in Heybridge gave us meals in a basket.”

Carole runs Cookies Cooking School which provides cooking classes at City of Chelmsford Mencap’s lifelong learning service, The Outreach Academy. Carole and her colleague Sara Pike teach healthy cooking skills to adults aged 18 and over who have a learning disability. Working with the students inspired Carole to raise funds for a course called The Indie Project teaching vital life skills including budgeting and social communication.

Grace Lidstone, City of Chelmsford Mencap’s adults’ services manager, said: “We’re thrilled to have the funding to develop this course, which will teach people with a learning disability the skills to live more independently. Thank you so much to everyone who took part or donated and to the local businesses that supported the event.”

Carole, who last year walked 105km London to Brighton in 30 hours, organised the bike ride after an earlier plan for a Ben Nevis triathlon fell through because two people were unavailable.

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She said: “I already had the sponsorship money so I thought I had better arrange something else.”

Readers can donate at www/justgiving.com/cityofchelmsfordmencap