A team of 40 riders drawn from across the transport and logistics sector have completed a 187-mile cycle ride from London to Paris to raise funds for Transaid’s work in sub-Saharan Africa, which is focused on improving road safety and access to health for rural communities.
On reaching the French capital yesterday (24 September), the group had already raised more than £65,000 before costs, with fresh sponsorships still coming in, aided by generous funding from headline sponsor uTrack Software, and support sponsor DP World.
The adventure began last Friday (22 September) with a 65-mile ride from London’s Greenwich Observatory to Newhaven, where the riders boarded a ferry bound for Dieppe. On Saturday they rode 70 miles to Beauvais, and despite using mostly dedicated cycle paths they collectively suffered 20 punctures in a single day, before the final 54-mile push on Sunday to reach the Eiffel Tower.
Commenting after the group’s arrival in Paris, Transaid’s head of fundraising, Florence Bearman, said: “This has been an incredible way to mark our silver jubilee, and a massive thank you goes to everyone who either jumped in the saddle to support us, or who sponsored one of the riders.
“Once again we’ve shown how the industry comes together to support Transaid, raising vital unrestricted funds which will help us to save more lives through our vital road safety and access to healthcare projects.”
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The riders this year represented firms from across the transport and logistics industry, including Abbey Logistics Group, Backhouse Jones, Dawsongroup, DVV Media, EORI, Fagan & Whalley, GXO, IVECO, Malcolm Group, Michelin, Microlise, PF Whitehead and PMMS Consultancy. Several riders closely associated with the industry also took part in a personal capacity.
This year’s ride marked the third time uTrack Software has been the headline sponsor for a Transaid Cycle Challenge. Founded in 2010 to help public transport companies improve passenger experiences through smarter service, the company had previously sponsored London to Brussels in 2014 and London to Paris in 2017.
Next year Transaid’s cycle challenge will return to Africa for its eleventh such event on the continent, with riders taking on a six-day, 474km journey on two wheels across majestic Kenya – where Transaid is currently undertaking a major project funded by the FIA Foundation.
Taking place from 4 – 13 October 2024, the international development organisation is currently inviting riders to sign up for this adventure, travelling from Nyeri at the foothills of Mount Kenya, to Lake Victoria. For more information and to find out how you can support the organisation visit www.transaid.org
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