‘It was very emotional at the end’ – Bus driver, 74, raises £1,000 for Letchworth social centre with 187-mile charity bike ride
- Credit: Archant
A 74-year-old bus driver from Baldock has raised more than £1,000 for his passengers’ social centre with a 187-mile cycle ride.
Ken Geggus, whose work sees him drive members to and from the Howard Garden Social and Day Care Centre in Letchworth, took on the challenge to help cover the centre’s shortfall following the loss of an annual £5,000 North Herts District Council grant.
And flanked by two friends – cyclist Steve West and triathalon athlete Steve Bishop – super-fit Ken completed the two-day Dulux Trade London Revolution on Sunday afternoon.
The trio, three of about 2,000 riders taking part in all, set out from Edmonton in north London at about 8.15am on Saturday.
Ken said: “We slowly made our way through London towards Tower Bridge, and this was the only problem as traffic was building up and we seemed to catch all the lights at red, so could not really get going. It took us nearly two hours to get through to south Dulwich, where the countryside opened up and we could start some serious riding.”
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After pit stops at 34 and 68 miles, at about 4pm Ken and the two Steves reached Windsor Racecourse, where they stayed overnight in tents – having cycled 100 miles in a day.
Ken didn’t sleep well and it rained quite hard on Sunday morning, but a good breakfast and a burst of sunshine helped him to get going.
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“Our next pit stop on day two as at 30 miles, and going through the Chiltern Hills was not easy for me after the preceding day – but the two Steves managed to drag me up those hills,” said Ken.
“About two miles from the next stop at 60 miles I unfortunately got a puncture, and when I stopped to change the inner tube I found a drawing pin in the tyre.
“After repairing the puncture and leaving the next pit stop, we were encouraged to know we only had 27 miles left, but it was sad to know our weekend was coming to an end.
“I don’t mind admitting I was knackered at this stage, but with the end in sight I was encouraged with a bit of extra energy from somewhere. I had my two friends giving me encouragement to get up those last few hills, and as we came through Enfield to the finish I could hear the steel band playing in the distance.
“It was very emotional to ride through the cheering crowds at the finish, and the three of us lined up abreast to cross the finishing line together. It was a weekend we will never forget.”
Ken had originally set out to raise £500 for the Howard Garden Social Centre, but between online and general sponsorship he has now raised more than £1,000.
For more or to donate, see everyclick.com/kensduluxtrade.