A team from the Leeds office of international accountancy firm Mazars has completed a 400km coast to coast bike ride and raised £28,588 – more than doubling its fundraising target for charity Brain Tumour Research.
David Blythe, Emma Thornhill and Ashley Barraclough – all of whom had very little cycling experience prior to their training – undertook the challenge in memory of colleagues and friends lost to brain tumours and related illnesses.
The challenge took place over four days, beginning on Wednesday 15 July in Southport, Merseyside and finishing on Saturday 18 July in Hornsea, East Yorkshire. The demanding route has taken them across three counties and includes the arduous Woodhead Pass in the Peak District.
The team arrived in Leeds last Friday as they embarked on the final leg of the challenge, where they were met by a number of Mazars staff outside the Royal Armouries who’d come out to cheer them on.
Brain Tumour Research’s Centres of Excellence need £2,740 each per day to sustain long-term, peer-reviewed research. The team’s original target of £13,700 equated to five days of funding; by raising in excess of £28,000 the team have sponsored ten days of research.
Team member David Blythe said: “In recent times two colleagues in our Leeds office and a family friend sadly passed away from brain tumours and related illnesses. It is in their memory that we are raising essential funds for Brain Tumour Research.
None of us has really done any proper cycling before, so the challenge has been quite tough at times but the support and incredible generosity has made it all worth it. Huge thanks to all of our colleagues, clients and friends who have donated.”
Carol Robertson, head of Community Fundraising at Brain Tumour Research, said: “We are enormously grateful to the team of intrepid cyclists from Mazars for taking on this gruelling challenge in memory of colleagues and friends lost to brain tumours.
“Their amazing endeavours have captured the hearts of so many, resulting in an astounding fundraising total. A huge thank you on behalf of the charity.
“Brain tumours kill more children and adults under the age of 40 than any other cancer yet just 1 per cent of the national spend on cancer research is allocated to this devastating disease.
“We are striving to fund a network of seven dedicated research centres whilst challenging the government and larger cancer charities to invest more in brain tumour research. Help us fund the fight. Together we will find a cure.”
Brain Tumour Research undertakes research into the prevention and cure of brain tumours and related brain illnesses. The lack of funding is one of the main reasons that brain tumour survival rates are not dropping and why it remains responsible for more deaths in the under-40s than any other cancer.