Storm Ali couldn’t blow dad off course
Brave Land’s End to John O’Groats cyclist
An intrepid Plains dad-offive got on his bike to cycle an astonishing 950 miles in 11 days for charity.
Not even the destructive Storm Ali could stop Graeme Patterson in his tracks as he braved harsh weather conditions to complete his Land’s End to John O’Groats journey.
Keen cyclist Graeme, 37, was firmly in the saddle as he took part in the sponsored cycle to collect funds for the MS Society.
Graeme’s dad James, 61, has had multiple sclerosis for 30 years and this was the latest in a series of fundraisers designed to help the fight against the demyelinating disease that affects the nervous system.
Graeme, a member of Airdrie Cycling Club, was joined on his 950mile trek by friend Phil Brown, from Peterborough, who raised funds for Kidney Research UK.
Graeme told the Advertiser: “We managed to complete the 950-mile cycle in 11 days, with 44,000 feet of climbing covering England, Wales and Scotland.
“It was very tough at times, especially when Storm Ali hit and we were getting pushed off our bikes by the wind.
“The hardest part, though, was when I came home for a night and then had to say goodbye to my wife and kids the next morning as I cycled off into the rain.
“But it was an enjoyable experience overall; we stopped every night, and for lunch each day, and took in some stunning scenery.
“The furthest we cycled in a day was 80 miles; the weather was dry until we got into Scotland and then the rain came down and we got soaking wet!”
But the testing trek had a fantastic finale as Graeme was surprised by wife Anna and children Rebekah, Judith, Ben, Samuel and Leah at the finishing line.
He said: “My kids took the day off school and Anna brought them to John O’Groats to greet me at the end of the trip.
“It was wonderful seeing them there and it made finishing the cycle feel even better.”
Graeme has raised an impressive £4700 from his charity cycle – with donations still welcome – which takes the overall total he has collected for the MS Society to almost £9000.
He said: “I’ve done 10ks, as well as 5ks with my wife and kids, in the past and it’s all about doing all I can for the charity.
“Raising awareness about multiple sclerosis is also important as many look at people with the disease and think they are fine; but nothing could be further from the truth.
“My dad was diagnosed 30 years ago and has fought very strongly, although he is struggling a little bit now and has to use a walking stick.
“My original fundraising target for the charity cycle was £2000 but that was smashed during the first week.
“The current total is £4700 and I am absolutely delighted with that; I’d like to thank everyone who has donated to the cause.”
Anyone who would like to contribute to Graeme’s fundraising campaign can visit www.justgiving. com/ Graeme- Paterson3? utm_ source=Sharethis&utm_
For further details on the MS Society and its work, go online to www.mssociety.org.uk/
Welcome surprise Graeme’s wife Anna and children Rebekah, Judith, Ben, Samuel and Leah met him in John O’Groats at the end of his trek
In gear to succeed Keen cyclist Graeme has collected £4700 during his latest fundraiser