Pershore teacher raises hundreds for charity after cycling from London to Paris - The Evesham Observer

Pershore teacher raises hundreds for charity after cycling from London to Paris

Evesham Editorial 21st May, 2017 Updated: 25th May, 2017   0

A PERSHORE teacher has raised hundreds of pounds for charity after cycling from London to Paris in less than 24 hours.

Keith Walden, Head of Performing Arts at Pershore High School, completed the 197-mile challenge and raised £700 for Onside – a Worcestershire based charity which provides support and services for adults who may be vulnerable, disadvantaged, discriminated against.

His challenge began at the Greenwich Observatory in London where he joined 120 cyclists for the first leg of the journey.

Keith’s journey split into three parts – leg 1 was 71 miles from London to Folkestone, leg 2 involved a coach transfer from Folkestone to Dieppe and leg 3 consisted of the final push to the Eiffel Tower in Paris and a distance of 126 miles.

“The whole experience was phenomenal’” he said.

“It was amazing cycling through the surprisingly hilly south of England and I was the first rider to reach Folkestone before enjoying a beautiful sunset over the English Channel and dining on some of the best fish and chips I have ever tasted.”

The challenge though wasn’t all plain sailing as Keith describes the moment the coach missed its Eurotunnel connection.

Unfortunately his transfer coach missed its Eurotunnel connection and instead of catching the 9.56pm train his party ended up leaving the UK at 1.11am in the morning before arriving in Dieppe at 5.30am – an hour behind the other bus party.

“Seven hours on a hot, sweaty bus felt like a long, long time and I only managed to sleep for about an hour,” he added.

“Cycling through the French countryside as dawn was breaking was great fun though, the sunshine really lifted our spirits and there was a great camaraderie between riders as we swapped stories and experiences of the previous day.

“Before I knew it Paris seemed to arrive, after cycling up what felt like two monster hills on the outskirts of Paris, and the feeling of achievement and pride on reaching the Eiffel Tower is one that will live long with me.

“Completing the ride in less than 24 hours and being one of the first to arrive made the experience even more fulfilling.”

Visit to donate to Keith’s cycling challenge.

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