Cycling off-road from Land’s End to John O’Groats – a magnificent challenge completed!
On 1 July 2009, brothers Matt and Nick Strange set off on an incredible journey - a bicycle ride from Land's End to John O'Groats – offroad! This took them across some of the most challenging terrain Great Britain has to offer - byways, cart/shooting tracks, National Cycle Routes and inevitably some roads. By the time they arrived on 23 July, they had covered over 1,200 miles, climbed over 130,000 ft, and all this in aid of our work with Asia’s bears, dogs and cats.
Matt explains his commitment to Animals Asia and the reasons behind his decision to undertake this very challenging journey:
“I'm a self employed IT contractor who has reached the time in life to have a mid life crisis! Land’s End to John o’Groats has long been an ambition. I originally thought about walking the journey but can't afford the time off. I recently discovered the cycling bug, but also found that I needed the challenge of long distance cycle routes, preferably off road.
While planning this epic ride, lots of people asked us what we were raising money for. Both my wife, Amanda, and I have been involved with Animals Asia for a number of years. Amanda’s mother and step-father set up the South Gloucestershire support group after seeing a TV documentary on the plight of the moon bears, and Amanda has been raising funds ever since!
We’ve both completed an abseil down the side of “The Eagle Tower” in Cheltenham. I have also completed a 10 mile run around the Badminton Horse Trials circuit (known as the Badminton Horseless Trials). Together with car boot sales and shopping centre collections the support group has raised nearly £40,000 and sponsored two bears named Abbey and Woodley, who are now living out their lives in the moon bear sanctuary in Sichuan, China, free from pain and fear.
Arriving at John O’Groats, not many people knew of our achievement but even so we felt like celebrities! A wonderful feeling made even more special by the countless friends we’d made along the way and by all the donations to Animals Asia Foundation by tremendously generous people, both in person and online.
A HUGE thank you to you all.”
Sponsored by the South Gloucestershire support group, Woodley has lived happily at the rescue centre for over four years.
And an equally huge thank you to Matt and Nick and all of their supporters from Animals Asia for the constant help and inspiration.
More information on Matt and Nick’s journey can be found on the diary pages on here.