Hedley’s big charity ride

Hedley Heron with his bike.'Picture Sam Lowe
Hedley Heron with his bike.'Picture Sam Lowe

A cyclist is aiming to raise £20,000 for charity as he embarks on a massive bike ride across the UK.

Hedley Heron, from Rothbury, will be setting off from the village during its music festival next month, in a Land’s End to John O’Groats ride with a difference.

Hedley, 56, will go from Rothbury to Land’s End, up to John O’Groats and then back to Rothbury – with the aim of completing the challenge in just over two weeks.

He wants to raise as much cash as possible for the Great North Air Ambulance in the process.

And he has already received donations of around £4,000.

Hedley works for Hexham and Northern Marts and is the foreman at Rothbury Mart.

But he also works at livestock sales and some farmers have donated lambs to be sold in future auctions to help boost the profits.

Hedley said: “I’m doing it for a few reasons but mainly because the Great North Air Ambulance is invaluable.

“I know a lot of people who have had to use it for one thing or another and if they hadn’t had it, they wouldn’t be here now.

“But the other reason is because I’m crazy!

“I want to do it in 16 days so there won’t be much time for rest. There will be some early mornings and late nights but I will have to see how it goes.

“The first day will be the quietest but probably also the hardest because of the hills.”

And to give him a bed along the way, he has bought a camper van which will carry his helpers and give him somewhere to sleep.

Edinburgh Bikes is also sponsoring him and providing spare wheels and kits to help out if he gets a puncture.

Hedley will leave Rothbury after having breakfast at Tomlinson’s Cafe at around 8am on Saturday, July 19. He is aiming to cycle around 130 miles a day, arriving back in Rothbury at around 3pm on Sunday, August 3.

Hedley launched his charity mission at the Simonside Hay Show at the The Gate pub in Forestburn Gate, near Rothbury, in February.