Getting ready for ride in aid of kids’ charity

Peter Ellard from Addington is doing a London to Paris cycle ride for charity.'120823M-D918

Peter Ellard from Addington is doing a London to Paris cycle ride for charity.'120823M-D918

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A north Bucks man is preparing for a London-to-Paris bike ride by cycling to work in London.

Peter Ellard, who lives between Winslow and Addington, is taking part in the sponsored cycle next month, in support of Kids Company, which provides practical, emotional and educational support to vulnerable inner-city children.

The ride, which sets off from central London on September 15, has been organised by Mr Ellard’s employer, telecommunications company Colt.

Mr Ellard said: “Any donations raised by myself and my colleagues on the ride, my company will match.”

At 58, Mr Ellard is the oldest of the 19 cyclists taking part.

He said: “Some of the cyclists are fit, some are not so fit. Some are young and some are not so young. I’m not so young and not so fit.”

Mr Ellard trains by cycling to work on a night shift in London once or twice a week. The 50-mile ride takes him about five hours including an hour’s break.

He said: “I don’t do it all in one go. I stop off to eat and drink. I go along the A413, get on to the A40 and from the A40 there’s a cycle path all the way to Park Royal where I work.

“Because I work long hours, I don’t usually do it in the daytime because I’d have to set off in the middle of the night.”

Mr Ellard admitted to feeling slightly nervous about the charity ride. He joked: “I am concerned about surviving!”

Luckily, his wife Annette, who is a nurse practitioner manager at Winslow’s Norden House Surgery, is on hand to help with any training injuries.

Mr Ellard said: “It’s going to he hard, especially if the weather’s hot. I cycled to work last Saturday and it was hard.

“But it’s going to be fun and at the end of the day it’s not a race. Everybody’s going at a nice pace to get to our goal, which is to raise as much money as possible for the charity.

“I’ve worked in London all my life and at night-time in my younger days there would be children begging and sleeping in cardboard boxes. It’s not a very nice thing to see.”

Sponsor Mr Ellard at https://mydonate.bt.com/fundraisers/londonparisbikeride?currentPage=1&update=new