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Cycle for Life’s return is a resounding success!

Monday 11th October

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The return of our much-loved charity cycle event was a huge success, raising over £20,000 so far!

Cycle for Life took place on 19th September, after a year’s hiatus due to COVID-19.

More than 340 local cyclists ‘got on their bikes’ to fundraise for the charity, including Woody the Cavachon puppy who took part with owner David Van Haaren.

A keen cyclist, this was David’s third Cycle for Life, but it was 18 month old Woody’s first 50k ride. Woody had a special ‘Buddy Rider’ dog seat at the front of the bike and the pair completed the 50k route together.

David has previously completed the London to Brighton bike ride 11 times, the London to Cambridge ride four times, as well as cycling from London to Amsterdam in 2004.

Speaking about the day, David said: “Woody often comes out on bike rides with me, he loves it! He goes crazy as soon as he sees me get the bike out of the garage, and loves being at the front of the bike, feeling the wind through his fur. I thought it might help motivate people to sponsor me if I added the ‘cute factor’ in and involved Woody on the day. He had a great time, and especially loved the fuss the Farleigh team made of him at the finish when he got his medal. I’ve always been a keen cyclist, but I had an operation on my back five years ago, which has limited how far I can cycle now. It’s fantastic that I’m still able to get out on my bike at all really.

“I like to support our local hospice charities as much as I can. I know a few people who have been cared for by Farleigh and that’s why I like to raise money for them. A friend of mine recently passed away, he received care from the Farleigh Hospice at Home team, so this year’s cycle was in his memory. The hospice movement is very close to my heart, they do such great work and it’s not recognised enough, they really do deserve every penny they can get.”

Cycle for Life is a sponsorship event and relies on riders raising as much money as possible to enable Farleigh Hospice to continue to care for people in mid Essex affected by life-limiting illness and bereavement. Featuring routes that make the most of the local scenery, it offers participants three routes with different distance options; 20, 50 and 100 km.

Debbie de Boltz, fundraising manager at Farleigh Hospice said: “It was wonderful to be able to hold Cycle for Life again. It has always been a hit among the local community, and, as predicted, it was well attended again this year. We’re still collecting sponsorship money, but so far, we have raised over £20,000, which is just fantastic! Every penny raised by participants goes towards helping us provide vital care and support to our community. It’s been a tough 18 months for us in terms of fundraising, and we really are grateful to all of our participants, volunteers, and the local business that donated their time, skills and equipment to help make the day such a success.”

You can view all our photos from the day on our Facebook page here.

If you are interested in taking part in future Farleigh cycling challenges, keep an eye on the Farleigh Hospice events webpage for more information: