Duo get into gear for charity fund-raiser

Sam Woods and Steve Parks
Sam Woods and Steve Parks

A Morpeth fund-raiser certainly believes in going the extra mile for charity – or rather 999 of them.

For Sam Woods has teamed up with his work colleague Steve Parks to take on a 1,000-mile cycle ride from Land’s End to John O’ Groats.

The pair, who work at Blyth-based equipment design manufacturer Tharsus Group, are taking on the epic challenge in aid of Mind, which supports people with mental-health problems and campaigns to improve services and awareness.

The duo, who set off on Monday, have undergone a strict training regime to prepare them for the ride, and sports therapist Katie Watson has been at hand to help them through the demanding schedule.

For part of the ten-day journey, the cyclists will stay at accommodation donated by HF Holidays and Ardarroch Cottage, while Tharsus has provided funding to cover the rest of the hotel costs.

Mr Woods said: “The training has been extremely difficult, but has prepared me for what lies ahead.

“Mind is a charity I hold in very high regard. It has helped someone close to me through a difficult time and I am proud to be giving something back.”

As well as collecting sponsorship for the ride, the pair have held several fund-raising events, including raffling a painting by local artist Kate Simpson and staging the Great Tharsus Bake-Off, where they encouraged colleagues to sell homemade cakes.

Tharsus Group Chief Executive Brian Palmer said: “The commitment the guys have shown to support this excellent cause has been fantastic.

“Not only is the effort they are putting into their training exceptional, they are also doing well to generate funds from their colleagues through some great fund-raising activities.”

To support Mr Woods and Mr Parks, and donate sponsorship, visit their web page mydonate.bt.com/fundraisers/mindsmatter