Fifteen fundraising cyclists have raised £16,000 to be split between St Giles Hospice and three other charities in an epic three-day bike ride through the heart of England.
The riders all work for Wills & Trusts Wealth Management Group, which organised the trip to support its charitable foundation.
Wills & Trusts Chief Operating Officer, Stuart Payne, from Sutton Coldfield, took part in the 210-mile ride and has a personal connection to St Giles Hospice as his father-in-law, John Simpson, received end-of-life care at St Giles Hospice in 2018.
He said: “The care my late father-in-law received at St Giles was just tremendous – I cannot praise the team there highly enough, whether it is for the way they looked after him in his last days or the support they offered to the rest of the family. They have such a wonderful bedside manner.
“We all know how hard charities have been hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, so supporting hospice care along the way seemed like a great way to make a difference on our cycling challenge.
“We came up with the idea of the bike ride as things opened up again after lockdown. For the past year our Wills & Trusts team has been forced to work from home due to Government guidance, so this cycle trip seemed like a great way to bring everyone back together and get the team bonding again.”
The team’s route took them from the company’s office in Ashby-de-la-Zouch to its head office in Thame, near Oxford, visiting its other offices along the way on a route through Henley-in-Arden, Moreton-in-Marsh and Winchester.
The money raised will be split between St Giles Hospice, Florence Nightingale Hospice in Aylesbury, Helen & Douglas House Children’s Hospice in Oxford and Winchester Hospice, four hospices based near the company’s offices.
Wills & Trusts Wealth Management Group founder David Batchelor said: “In our business we help families to plan for the future, whether it’s planning for retirement or passing money down. We help people to prepare for all of the different journeys through life and inevitably hospice care is a part of some of those journeys, so raising money to support our local hospices made perfect sense to us.
“Our team included both serious riders and people who had not been out on a bike until six weeks ago, and their dedication and determination has been matched by the generosity of our supporters and donors who have helped us to race past our £10,000 target and raise this fantastic total.”
St Giles Hospice Income Generation Director, Elinor Eustace, said: “We are so grateful to the team at Wills & Trusts Wealth Management Group for their amazing fundraising effort, which will help to support the care we offer to patients and their families living with a terminal illness.
“Their dedication and hard work are truly an inspiration to us at a time when we have never needed our community more, following 18 months when we have had to close our shops and cancel fundraising events due to the pandemic. If any other businesses would be interested in helping St Giles then we’d be delighted to hear from them.”