‘The care they gave my father was amazing’ – Stotfold rider to cycle across Andalucia to raise £1,000 for Garden House Hospice Care in Letchworth

On the road somewhere near Seville during a past trip.

On the road somewhere near Seville during a past trip.

A serial cycling fundraiser is set to ride 500 miles across Spain to raise money for the Letchworth hospice that cared for his father.

Relaxing in Seville on a past trip.

Relaxing in Seville on a past trip.

Martin Rowe, from Stotfold, has already completed nine such rides in aid of Garden House Hospice Care, raising a total of about £15,000 – and he’s hoping to add another £1,000.

September’s Andalusian adventure will take him and four companions up from Malaga up towards Seville, then round to Granada and back to Malaga to fly home.

“My dad, Johnny Rowe, died a number of years ago after a long battle with cancer,” said Martin, 57.

“Throughout his illness he was looked after with great love and care by everyone at the hospice.

“The support of the hospice was amazing and I can’t imagine how my family and I would have got through such a difficult time without that support.

“Somehow I never look upon the hospice and feel sad – just immense gratitude for the care they gave my father. I am hoping to raise £1,000 to help them continue their great work so other families can benefit from their incredible dedication.”

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Martin’s previous rides over the past two decades have taken him several thousands miles across Spain, Portugal and France, as well as from John O’Groats to Land’s End and coast-to-coast across Ireland – but he told the Comet that Spain is perhaps his favourite place to cycle.

“The Spanish car drivers are much more polite when it comes to cyclists,” said Martin.

“The scenery makes it a huge adventure. It’s very hilly and you get roads just stretching out with no cars for miles and miles. It’s a brilliant place for cycling.

“They’re a magnificent, lovely race of people, too – I’m trying to learn the language. We try not to meet any Brits along the way!”

Martin will be accompanied on his trip by his 57-year-old cycling partner Steve Theaker and three riders from the Abergavenny Cycling Club in Wales. Martin will be footing the bill for all flights, hotels and other expenses, so any donations will go straight to the hospice.

For more information or to donate to Martin’s cause, see justgiving.com/martinjohnrowe.

For more on Garden House Hospice Care see ghhospice.co.uk.