A Horley pilot has rallied a team of friends, including an Olympian, to cycle from Spain to Surrey in a seven-day endurance fundraiser in memory of his father.
Airline pilot James Bonham will be cycling in the seven-strong team from Barcelona to Box Hill in memory of his father John, who died of incurable cancer in 2007.
He was aged just 57.
James has committed to raising as much money as he can for Macmillan Cancer Support, the charity who supported his family towards the end of his father’s life. The team will be aiming to cycle the 1,400km from Barcelona to Box Hill in just a week.
Among them will be Olympian and Iron Man triathlete Nick Buckfield.
An additional crew of four will be supporting the riders in two vehicles. James said: “Cycling 1,400 km from Barcelona to Box Hill in just seven days will require a tremendous human effort and stamina, and I am hoping to raise a total of £30,000 for Macmillan Cancer Support.”
He said: “The Macmillan Cancer Support team was fantastic during a very difficult time for me and my family. “They offered care, support and advice when we needed them most, and I am deeply grateful for the work that they do.”
He said: “I wanted to show my appreciation and give something back, and this is my way of raising money and awareness for such a worthy cause.” The team will leave Barcelona on Sunday, May 25, aiming to finish at Box Hill on Saturday, May 31.
James said: “Friends and family from all the riders are going to meet us at Box Hill.
“A lot will be joining us for the last stretch and we plan to have as many people as possible ride with us to the top, and cross the finish line.”
He continued: “We have raised £10,000 so far, and we hope that people will support us in our quest to raise as much money as we can for Macmillan Cancer Support.
“I hope that the contribution that my friends and I make will help them continue to help cancer sufferers and their families overcome the emotional, physical and financial challenges that they will face.”
James’ mum, Cheryll, and his aunt Ruth, raised nearly £2,500 for the cause recently through coffee mornings and garage and car boot sales.
The team is expected to cross the finish line at the National Trust car park on top of Zig Zag Road in Box Hill at 1pm on May 31.
All are welcome to greet them and celebrate their epic cycling achievement.
For more details visit: www.SevenDayEpic.com People wanting to sponsor the team's effort can do so online at: http://www.justgiving.com/sevendayepic In Surrey, more than 4,250 people are diagnosed with cancer every year. Across the county, there is a team of around 140 Macmillan healthcare professionals, who provide care and support to people affected by cancer, ranging from clinical nurse specialists to dieticians, occupational therapists and family support workers.
Just £27 will fund a Macmillan nurse for an hour to provide care to cancer patients and their families.
For more information about Macmillan call 0300 1000 200, or for any cancer related queries, call the cause's support line (freephone) on 0808 808 0000 - 9am to 8pm Monday to Friday.