|NEWS||3rd Apr 2012|
On Monday 17th September, 2012 Simon Benson is commencing handcycling from John O'Groats to Lands End - a staggering feat on a normal bike - let alone by hand! Simon, who is a wheelchair user, will be joined by a group of close friends on conventional bikes. Their aim, through Bike 4 Cancer, is to raise significant funds for Kamran's Ward at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford and the charity Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research.
For the latest updates from Simon, please see the End to End Facebook page
In Simon's own words...
On 16 October 2010 my eldest son, Jacob, lost his battle with leukaemia. He was 12, only 6 months before becoming a teenager - one of his biggest dreams.. He'd been fighting the disease for over 4 years and was treated on Kamran's Ward at The John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford. Jacob's mum, sister, brother and I are trying to cope; some days are good but many are not.
My friend, Andy Goodwin, suggested last year, as something to focus on, that we cycled from John O'Groats to Lands End for charity (he's done it before). Somewhat reluctantly I agreed to give it a go and borrowed another friend's handbike to get some miles in and found I really enjoyed it, for lots of different reasons. As the year progressed many things happened; quite quickly I felt this challenge was a fitting way to remember Jacob and an opportunity to raise lots of money for these two essential charities. I bought a new bike and kit, got on with training and a number of other close old mates said that they wanted do it as well. So the current party includes - Andy Goodwin, me, Chris Wortt, Jon Sharp, Paul Homersham and Ben Jarvis with support from Chris Benson, Trevor Wortt, Lynnette Homersham and Richard Groome. It's fantastic to have such committed friends and family involved and fully behind remembering Jacob, achieving our challenge and raising money.
Another element to this challenge is that, as previously mentioned, I'm doing this ride on a handbike, as I'm a wheelchair user and the other participants are able bodied cyclists. My handcycle is much heavier than a conventional bike - this is most noticeable when cycling uphill where my pace is slower. In short, my arms and shoulders take much more of a pounding in comparison with my team mates' much bigger and stronger legs.
I'm in the wheelchair as a result of an illness that struck me in November 2001, initially putting me in a life threatening coma for two weeks. The great medical care I received saved my life and meant that the damage done was restricted to my spinal cord below chest level T7. I've rehabilitated significantly from those early days and am fit and able, covering short distances on crutches. Classed as incomplete paraplegic level T7, I'm predominantly wheelchair bound and have a number of things to be managed associated with my condition but it all pales into insignificance when I remember what Jacob went through and his resolve, his acceptance of his illness and his happy, loving, joking predisposition. He's with me every moment of every day and I hope I can serve him well by finishing our ride and raising £1,000s. The money raised is critical for both Kamran's Ward and Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research to continue to improve the complex and varied treatments prescribed to such young patients and to beat these killer blood cancers. Over the years amazing improvements in diagnosis, treatment and prognosis have been made saving many lives but still too many children do not survive.
Please join us in raising much needed funds for these superb causes. Many thanks for all your support...
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Total raised so far
Donors & messages of support
|Best wishes from All at Imtech ICT UK|
From S Gore
|Donation from staff at Polycom, thanks people|
From Mr S N Benson
|Further donation from Debretts, thank you all so much xx|
|Huge thanks to the children, staff and parents at Hungerford Primary School for further fundraising this very generous amount! Xx|
|From one cyclist to another. Well done! Jeff Garner.|
From Mr C T Benson
|Congratulations on an amazing ride from Sam at salon 46|
From MISS L V BENSON
|Donation from Val Holley|
From Mr S N Benson
|Sorry taken so long Buddy, £20 of this is from my cousin when we called in on the way back from Lands End.
Have a great new year
From R J Boulton
|Christmas donation in lieu of sending Christmas cards|
From Mr S N Benson
From Mr Rhys Atkinson