A team of 25 saddle-sore staff from Middlesbrough firm AV Dawson are celebrating after raising more than £10,000 for charity via a 210-mile cycle challenge from Edinburgh to Teesside.
As patrons of Teesside Philanthropic Foundation, the funds will be channelled through the charity to the Buddy Bag Foundation, which provides emergency refuge for children in crisis.
Despite much chafing and sore legs, all 25 riders completed the three-day challenge that started at Edinburgh Castle and ended with families, friends and colleagues cheering them home at the Tees Barrage.
Led by the firm’s operations director Andrew Watkins and accompanied by Buddy Bag representative Chris Williams, the determined riders survived head winds of up to 24mph, lots of punctures, five breakdowns, several falls and one of the team getting lost twice.
Organiser Neil Olver, the firm’s head of health and safety, said: “We arrived home to a massive welcome party and I don’t think there was a dry eye amongst us.
“Despite the winds, punctures, falls and even a rear wheel falling off, we achieved what we set out to do.
“We completely smashed our fundraising target of £6,000, so thank you to all the riders, all those who sponsored us and those who might still do so.
“All of the money we’ve raised will stay on Teesside and the Buddy Bags it funds will go to refuges based in the area.”
Almost 50,000 children require emergency accommodation in the UK each year – children fleeing violent situations often have to leave home quickly, without a chance to collect basic items.
Provided to some of the children who need emergency accommodation as a result of violent situations, a Buddy Bag contains basic items such as toiletries, pyjamas, socks and underwear, along with books and teddy bears.
To sponsor the team, visit www.justgiving.com/fundraising/AV-Dawson