• Mon. May 27th, 2024

Man cycles for three days for charity to remember mum’s birthday


Oct 6, 2022

A man who cycled for three days from the north of England to Benson said: “I enjoy doing something to remember Mum around her birthday”.

Chris Wood, 39, completed the charity bike ride from Blackburn in Lancashire to Oxfordshire to raise funds for Sue Ryder in memory of his mum, Louise.

He said: “Mum was diagnosed with late stage cancer in April 2018 and she received amazing palliative care and support from Sue Ryder before she died just four weeks later.

“It was an incredibly difficult time for all of us, but all of the team at Sue Ryder Palliative Care Hub South Oxfordshire were so wonderful to mum and to all of us.

“It was mum’s birthday in September, so I decided I wanted to do something around this date to remember her and to raise funds for Sue Ryder to support the amazing work that they do.”

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Chris set out on September 7 on the ride – christened the ‘Tou de Lou’ – from Blackburn Royal Hospital where Louise was born in 1959, to Benson where she lived at the end of her life.

“She absolutely loved it down there, so I thought doing that journey myself on a bike would be a nice way to remember her," said Chris, who lives in Chester.

The Tou de Lou is now in its fifth year, with Chris and his friend Steve Brackenridge completing this year's ride between the September 9 – 11.

“I think this was probably the best year we’ve had weather-wise,” he said. “Normally when we start in Blackburn the weather is horrendous and we’ve cycled in absolute deluges in the past.

"However, this year for the first two days we never got rained on! Bizarrely we could see rain falling all around us but it was like a pocket of sunshine was travelling over us.

“On the final day we cycled to Sue Ryder Palliative Care Hub South Oxfordshire in Wallingford and there were a number of Sue Ryder nurses and staff there to welcome us when we arrived and provide us with delicious cake which was just so lovely.

"It meant so much.”

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Through his incredible challenges Chris has now raised over £30,000 for Sue Ryder.

He said: “If Mum knew I was doing these challenges she’d think I was crazy, but I also think she’d be proud that our family is supporting the charity that provided such valuable help to us during such a sad and difficult time.”

There’s still time to donate to Chris’ fundraising page. Visit: justgiving.com/fundraising/toudelou22.

For more information about Sue Ryder Palliative Care Hub South Oxfordshire, visit: sueryder.org/southox.

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