SWS UK’s Stock and Distribution Supervisor Sam Betts lead the way in a gruelling charity bike ride which saw them travel 57 miles in a bid to raise money for Ronald McDonald House charities, which provides a free ‘home away from home’ to families whose child is in hospital.
With the help of his friends, Sam organised the event after a close friend, and former employee of SWS UK required the support of the House Charity when his son was rushed to St Mary’s neonatal hospital in Manchester shortly after his birth at Lancaster infirmary. Sam told us just how important the Ronald McDonald house was to his friend and hundreds of other families ‘having a sick child in hospital is stressful enough without having the worry of paying for expensive accommodation close by. The house provides a place for the family to stay which includes a room and communal kitchen which can be accessed 24 hours a day. The small community of other parents also provided invaluable support during their stay’.
Sam and 14 other riders decided they would raise money for the charity by cycling the 57-mile journey travelled by the ambulance from Lancaster Infirmary to St Mary’s in Manchester. At 7:00am on the 26th August, the riders left Lancaster and started their journey along the A6. Passing through Garstang, Broughton, Fulwood, Preston and Leyland, Sam and his team had just two stops before arriving at their destination at 1:00pm, with the journey taking six hours in total.
Sam told us ‘with good weather on our side, we completed the ride without encountering any major hurdles, however the four lanes of traffic on the Manchester ring road proved to be a little hair raising! With Manchester Pride taking place on the same day, the city centre was a lot busier than we had envisaged but we loved the atmosphere and the parades distracted us from our legs which by this point, were starting to ache!’
Upon reaching their destination, a representative from Ronald McDonald charities was waiting to congratulate them with a large cheque displaying the total raised by the riders. In recognition of the £7,800 raised, the charity has named one of the rooms in the Manchester House after the son of SWS UK’s former employee and featured their achievement on the Ronald McDonald social media pages.
The 15 riders were delighted with the response they received and are now considering an annual event to raise money for the charity, possibly with an overnight camp so that they can include their children.
Managing Director Colin Reoch commented ‘I am extremely impressed with the total Sam and his friends raised for the charity. Cycling 57 miles was I’m sure, quite a challenge and I would like to congratulate them all on their achievement which has aided a very worthy cause’