Epic cycle ride to the Pyrenees

Kent Sport staff member Lesley Parker set off on Saturday morning with her husband Andy and good friends Lizzie and Martin, on an epic cycle ride of 1,125K (700 miles) through France. The adventure started in Bishopsbourne and will end in Bagneres de Luchon in the Pyrenees. The idea was hatched one evening in their local pub the Mermaid over a pint or two, when one of them suggested ‘Why don’t we cycle from the Merm to Billy’s Bar’.  This is a local bar in Luchon – many a Tour de France has been watched from there.

Lesley has trained hard by cycling to work along with a few gym sessions and a lot of encouragement from her colleagues and friends.  She has chosen the Pilgrims Hospice as her charity and just hopes she can keep up with the other three …. Kent Sport wishes her luck.

Andy Parker would like it known that his only cycling experience to date was gained on his paper round which he believes he stopped when he was 14. So having rediscovered cycling over 40 years later, mainly as a result of a strange fascination in the Tour de France, the whole idea of cycling from Bishopsbourne to Bagneres de Luchon in the French Pyrenees is, in his opinion, “bordering on madness”. Lizzie has always admired people achieving exceptional personal goals and believes that being active and healthy should form a part of everyone’s lifestyle. Martin has for many years been enthralled with cycling and the desire to achieve a formidable sporting challenge remains at the forefront of his dream.

Lesley says of her chosen charity, “I have personally seen the excellent care and support that the Canterbury Hospice provides for family members and friends. I recently took part in the annual cycle ride for the hospice which was supported by Kent Sport where I work. It is for these reasons that I am determined to complete the journey from Bishopsbourne, through France to Bagneres de Luchon in the Pyrenees with my husband (Andy) and two friends (Lizzie and Martin). The vision for hospice care is that everyone in east Kent should have access to service so they can cope with life-limiting illness with dignity and free form pain. Pilgrims Hospices has been providing end of life care and support for patients and their families across east Kent for more than 30 years.”

To support Lesley in her epic ride and fundraising efforts for Pilgrims Hospices you can visit her JustGiving page www.justgiving.com/fundraising/lesley-parker2. To find out more about the team and their route visit their website and Facebook page (@BBsquadracorse) for updates.


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