Dad taking on cycle challenge for Willow Foundation after cancer recovery

Danny Loo

Danny Loo is hoping to raise as much as possible for the Willow Foundation - Credit: Danny Loo

A Stevenage dad is taking on the London to Brighton cycle ride to aid in his rehabilitation following cancer treatment, while raising vital funds for the Willow Foundation.

Danny Loo has already smashed his £500 fundraising target within a week of launching the page, and now hopes to raise £1,000 for the charity.

Danny Loo will be doing the London to Brighton cycle challenge in September in aid of The Willow Foundation

Danny Loo will be doing the London to Brighton cycle challenge in September in aid of The Willow Foundation - Credit: Danny Loo

"I worked for Willow before, so I know the great work they do," he said.

"They are a local charity based in Welwyn Garden City and I know a couple of people who work or volunteer there. They do really great work, and it's nice to support a local charity, especially after the horrible year we've all had.

"I know charities as a whole have all suffered through the pandemic so I want to do my bit to support a local one.

"I didn't think I would hit the £500 target in less than a week - if we can now reach £1,000, that would be fantastic."

Danny and Sonny Loo

Danny and Sonny Loo have taken advantage of the one hour exercise allowed during the lockdown periods - Credit: Danny Loo

Danny was diagnosed with stage three bowel cancer at the end of 2020.

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Following his successful treatment at Lister Hospital, the cycling has kept him fit and focused on his rehabilitation.

He decided to get back on his bike during the lockdowns as part of his one hour exercise a day with his two sons, Brandon and Sonny. 

"I didn't cycle much before the lockdown. When we were given an hour to exercise I was going for walks, and then decided to get back on my bike."

Now, looking ahead to the challenge, which he is taking on alongside friend Richard Woodham, he said: "I'm excited by it. It's 55 miles and I haven't cycled that far yet in my training rides. The furthest I've gone is 48 miles, so nearly there!

"The main challenge on the way will be the Ditchling Beacon, which is a hill with a 16 per cent incline at its steepest. I know others have to dismount and walk - I'll tackle that when I get there."

The Willow Foundation works with seriously ill young adults aged 16 to 40 to create special days which are tailor-made experiences for service users.

The cycle will take place on September 19. To support Danny, go to justgiving.com/fundraising/daniel-loo.

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