17 Sep 2016 by Charles Manners
This month, 28 amateur cyclists took part in an epic cycling adventure across the UK and Europe, raising thousands of pounds for the Northampton Hope Centre (a homeless charity) in the process. Organised by Pidy UK, the 2016 event is the third consecutive year in which cyclists have taken on the challenge in aid of fundraising for the homeless charity which I support as a board member. I followed in a support vehicle on the European leg, enjoying the cafes and scenery and supporting my wife who was cycling!
The route, which started at the University of Northampton, went through Northamptonshire, Cambridgeshire and Essex over the first two days. An overnight ferry to the Hook of Holland then saw the group of intrepid cyclists leave the undulations of the UK behind to ride the stunning cycle paths that crisscross the Netherlands. The final day of the trip took the team into Belgium, to the cobbled streets of Bruges for a quick stop (lunch for us) and refuel before a final push on to the WWI battlefields and memorials of the Passchendaele and Tyne Cot and the finish in the shadow of the Menin Gate, Ypres - 270 miles and four days after leaving Northampton.
With the funds raised from Ride 4 Hope 2016 still being collected, the total is yet to be announced, but it is expected to be well above £20,000, a record for the event.
Organised by the team from Pidy UK, http://www.pidy.com the Northampton based division of the a international leader in ‘Ready-to-fill’ pastry products, we were treated to a very good dinner upon arrival before a tour of the Pidy factory in Ypres and a buffet of delicious canapes and small plates created using products in the company’s range and cooked by two leading development chefs.
For more information on the Northampton Hope Centre or to find out other ways in which you are able to support the dedicated work of the charity, please visit www.northamptonhopecentre.org.uk