09 Jun 2014

Wheely great bike ride raises a spoke-tacular £2,000

Openreach bike rides - Ian Coates, Rob Howard, John Moore and Jamie Barker

Earlier this year, we featured an article about the Cambridge Openreach team as they embarked on a 100-mile cycle ride. Pedalling round the quiet countryside lanes of Cambridgeshire, the team of four raised some serious dough for The Sick Children’s Trust.

Funds raised will support families with sick children being treated at Addenbrookes Hospital in Cambridge who stay free of charge, on-site in the charity’s Acorn House. We caught up with the fearless foursome (Ian Coates, Rob Howard, John Moore and Jamie Barker) to find out how their ride went.

Encouragement from other riders

Speaking for the team, Ian Coates said: “The main highlights were seeing about 20 other riders from Norfolk who were all riding in support of the same charity as us. Also, the amount of encouragement that other riders gave us on the road - urging us on and saying what a worthwhile cause it is.”

Ian went on to say: “The last three miles were some of the toughest with a long incline back into Newmarket, then turning left into the finish we had a 28mph head wind but as we approached the finish, you could not stop the grin, especially when I saw my family waving and shouting their support.”

Making a real difference to families

Thanks to the funds raised by the Openreach team, the charity will be able to fully fund a family room in Acorn House for six months. On average, families stay at the house for 12 nights, which means the Openreach team has helped support around 15 families with their fundraising. This has allowed parents and siblings to stay together and be close by their sick child while they are having lifesaving treatment in hospital.

Jane Featherstone, Head of Fundraising at The Sick Children’s Trust, said: “It costs us £28 a night to provide a room for one family in desperate need, but as a charity, we rely entirely on voluntary donations. The money raised by the Openreach team’s hard work will go directly towards helping families in the most difficult of circumstances. We’re thrilled with the results and want to thank everyone who has supported the team during their training and challenge.”

Straightforward team fundraising pages

Since December 2013 Team Openreach have raised more than £3,600 through various fundraising events, with £2,122 being achieved through the bike ride alone.

Speaking about MyDonate’s team fundraising pages Tracey Tibbetts, team co-ordinator, said: “Considering this was the first time that I have created pages on the web I found it very straightforward to set up the team pages on MyDonate. I would definitely recommend MyDonate to other team fundraisers.”

The team’s efforts have resulted in them being named the ‘Fundraising Company of the Quarter’ by the Sick Children’s Trust.

You can donate to Team Openreach’s fundraising page

Find out how The Sick Children’s Trust is supporting families whose children are receiving hospital treatment for serious illnesses.

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