Has­san heads out for 1,000-mile dream cy­cle

Macclesfield Express - - NEWS -

AN ‘oc­ca­sional cy­clist’ is set to pedal from Land’s End to John O’Groats for char­ity.

Has­san Pil­lai, 67, from Bollinbrook, will set off on the 1,000 mile jour­ney on June 27 along with seven oth­ers in an event or­gan­ised by char­ity Sus­trans.

The ride, which has been bro­ken down into stages, will take 17 days and is due to fin­ish on July 13.

Fa­ther-of-three Has­san said he had en­joyed cy­cling in the Peak Dis­trict since re­tir­ing and he has wanted to try go­ing from Land’s End to John O’Groats for a long time.

He said: “It has been a dream ul­ti­mate ex­pe­ri­ence for many years and I am very for­tu­nate to un­der­take this with the sup­port of Sus­trans.”

Has­san has so far raised £1,100 of his £1,500 tar­get and is be­ing sup­ported in his ef­forts by a for­mer em­ployer.

Has­san added: “Be­fore I re­tired I worked with Bar­clays. They’ve agreed to match any do­na­tions I get up to £750.”

Has­san is un­der­tak­ing the ride for Sus­trans, which has or­gan­ised the chal­lenge to celebrate the 20th an­niver­sary of the Na­tional Cy­cle Net­work, as well as a char­ity in Africa.

He said: “I’m also rais­ing money for Ndi Moyo, a hos­pice in Malawi that pro­vides care for peo­ple with ter­mi­nal ill­nesses.

“They re­ally need funds to buy a new am­bu­lance.”

Has­san has not given much thought to which part of the jour­ney he thinks will be his favourite but says he is look­ing for­ward to Scot­land.

He said: “The ride takes me to part of Scot­land I’ve never been to be­fore, so I’m quite look­ing for­ward to that.”

The first day of the ride is a 76.5 mile ride from Land’s End to Bod­min, with the last day of the ride, from Betty Hill to John O’Groats be­ing just 51 miles. Kate Jones, events fundrais­ing man­ager at Sus­trans said they’d de­signed the route to take in the best of the Na­tional Cy­cle Net­work – which now cov­ers al­most 14,000 miles of routes across the coun­try.

She said: “Riders will ex­pe­ri­ence moun­tains, lakes and bridges, whilst tak­ing on one of cy­cling’s most chal­leng­ing rides.

“We’re de­lighted that Has­san is tak­ing on this amaz­ing ef­fort to cy­cle the length of the coun­try and en­cour­age peo­ple to spon­sor him with what­ever they can.”

The planned route should pass close to Knutsford on July 3.

Any­one who wishes to do­nate can do so at www. just­giv­ing.com/Has­sanPil­lai-LEJOG

●● Has­san Pil­lai pre­par­ing for his bike ride from John O’Groats to Land’s End

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