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Pete sets off on London to Paris bike ride for Willowbrook Hospice
BRADLEY Wiggins’ sporting feats last year, inspired many to get back on a bike, but for some that means more than a quick trip round the park.
Pete Mainey has set out today (Wednesday, August 14) on a 300 mile trip from Crystal Palace to Paris to raise cash for Willowbrook Hospice.
Having raised £2,700 so far the 45-year-old from Eccleston admitted: “As a high percentage of the population of the UK did, I rediscovered cycling last summer, with the success of Bradley in the Tour and the GB team on the track.
“I used to cycle a bit more than 13 years ago but was motivated to get the bike out of the shed and hit the roads to improve my fitness.”
Pete, who owns the Spectacle Centre outside the Hardshaw Centre, said that initially he had intended to take part in this year’s Manchester to Blackpool ride for Willowbrook, but he spotted an advert in their autumn newsletter for a London to Paris ride and was immediately drawn to the challenge.
As with many people in St Helens, Willowbrook is a cause close to his heart.
He explained: “I have had family touched by cancer in the past. Thankfully they haven’t needed the services of the hospice but we have had other family members that have passed away at Willowbrook.
“My mother-in-law has been a volunteer for them for a long time and my wife Viv has worked for them for seven years, running their charity shop.
“Seeing the work they do, providing comfort for patients and their families; it’s run by people who care deeply about their work.
“The care they provide is free. Although the hospice does receive a grant towards its running, approximately 40 per cent from the NHS, it relies heavily on public donations towards its yearly running costs of around £2.8m.”
Pete, who took part in a sponsored skydive for Willowbrook five-years-ago said he is as prepared as he can be for the challenge, which is expected to last four days arriving at the Eiffel Tower on Saturday.
You can donate towards Pete’s ride via mydonate.bt.com/fundraisers/petesbigbikeride or text WLTP99 to 70070 followed by the donation amount. You can also pop into his opticians or the Willowbrook charity shop in Rainford.