Pedal For Henfield
by Robert Veitch
The story of a dozen adventurers from Henfield is one that’s earning admiration and also hopes to earn a great deal of funds for local causes.
The prospect of cycling from Paris to Henfield might be one most readers view with a ‘rather them than me’ attitude, but that is exactly what a team of cyclists from Mid Sussex are doing.
The ‘Pedal for Henfield’ team of charity fundraisers consists of Adrian Hillman, Tracey Prescott, Samantha Bremner, Douglas Campbell, Thomas Kemp, Bek Seager, Claire Proud, Robert Proud, Bob Beatty and Deborah Scott.
Adrian has organised ‘Pedal to Henfield’ in tandem with Tracey, his long time cycling buddy, and Sammy Bremner, a fitness instructor at Henfield Leisure Centre. All the proceeds from the ride will be split evenly between the Haven at Henfield and Henfield Leisure Centre. As Adrian pointed out, “even charities need to turn a profit so they can make future investments.” Henfield Leisure Centre has twenty full and part time staff , while volunteers mostly staff the Haven.
On Thursday 15th March, the cyclists will be boarding a train to Paris, briefly enjoying the French capital overnight before their version of ‘the hell of the north’ begins the following morning at the Eiffel Tower.
Two support vans will accompany the cyclists on the long ride home. “We’re all self-funded,” Adrian noted, “because we want everything we raise to go to our beneficiaries.” Adrian hopes the support vehicles, which are being donated, will be sponsored, enabling the team to raise even more money for their beneficiaries.
On Friday 16th March the team will pedal 110-120 miles towards Dieppe, where they will stay overnight. After shaking off any muscular stiffness the following morning, they will don the lycra once again, take the ferry to Newhaven and then cycle back to Henfield to complete the challenge.
When asked why the ride is from Paris and not to Paris Adrian answered with a big grin, “we want a big finale riding into Henfield, lots of publicity, well supported by the people, maximising our fundraising… also, we want to have a big party at the end in the Leisure Centre.”
Adrian revealed the Henfield community could help with fundraising by taking part in a parallel ‘Spinathon’ at Henfield Leisure Centre. It’s a straightforward concept; teams of sponsored riders on the spinning bikes, turn their pedals for the same daily duration as the team on the road. It’s a way for other leisure centre users and local residents to help make community facilities sustainable in the long term. “To keep the community facilities ticking over, requires community to come together to help fundraise,” says Adrian.
And of course, they’re all welcome to party afterwards too.
To donate please contact Tracey on 07944 372927