Thursday, 20 March 2008

So, I'm cycling from Nottingham to Paris on a Brompton

Regular readers will know I've been dusting of my web site development skills to builda web site for a charity ride that I'm taking part in in May. I've set up to promote the Ride for Round Hill school charity cycle from Beeston, Nottingham, to Paris, France. 355 miles in 4 days.

We, myself and 14 other riders plus support, are raising £15,000 to fund the purchase of a school minibus, secure cycle storage for children's bikes and cycle safety training.

The minibus is the big chunk of the money but in many ways this will give the most back. It will mean that lots more extra-curricular activities are available to all children at the school. At the moment this requires coordinating 5 car drives and means a lot of the time it doesn't happen.

Why the Brompton?

When I first started talking about the ride to friends there were reasonably impressed but thought it was well within my capabilities. The point of the exercise is is to raise as much money as possible and people seem to donate more if there's pain involved so I decided to up the ante.

For the uninitiated among you, a Brompton is a fabulously practical folding bike that is perfect for a 5 mile commute. It's what I ride most days either to our Nottingham or London (I use the train most of the way there!) offices. It's a terrible machine on which to attempt a 355 mile cycle in 4 days.

The picture above shows quite well the difference between me (the one at the front on the little bike) and everyone else (on normal, fast looking bikes). On my racing bike I'm pretty comfortable at 18-20mph on the Brompton this is more like 12-14mph. This means I'm going to spend 50% more time in the saddle to cover the same distance. This also means 50% more effort.

Esendex are getting involved of course. As well as the web hosting we'll be providing mobile blogging and hopefully some other things depending on how my discussion go with some other parties.

So if any of you fancy helping us in our quest by making a donation that would of course be marvellous. Just go to

I appreciate that this is very much a community project and doesn't necessarily have the broader relevance of charities like the NSPCC, Marie Curie Cancer, etc. But a wise man once said "children are our future" and the more opportunities we give them, the brighter that future will be for all of us.

No comments: