I don’t want to ‘come the Old Soldier’, but I did 39 years’ service in the Army and have three times experienced the excellent treatment and rehabilitation offered to our wounded service men and women – in RAMC Woolwich and Salisbury hospitals and by the staff at Headley Court.
I may be 75 years old now but I think it’s never too late to try and give something back. Headley Court and Selly Oak Hospital desperately need extra funds for their work, so I aim to raise money for Help for Heroes who are providing it.
My challenge, starting 25 April, is to spend the next 30 days cycling from Land’s End to John O’ Groats and back – around 2000 miles – alone and without back-up,survival gear on the bike (so no costs).
Every penny you give – and a penny-a-mile is £20 – will be most gratefully received by Help for Heroes on behalf of our wounded service men and women. If you would like to help, please donate on this page. On behalf of Help for Heroes, many thanks in advance for your support. Chris Irven
Noon, 29 May 2010: Well, I did it! But why not make it a Fiver a Mile for Help for Heroes?
I cycled 2,038 miles round Britain,unsupported, on a heavy-laden bike, on my own. And your response has been phenominal. On JustGiving alone, with Gift Aid, we've raised over £8,500 when I thought £6,000 was pushing it. People along the way have given another £1,000. And there's a pile of cheques and other donations come in while I've been pedalling that I've not had time to count yet. So we must be near £10,000 already! That's £5 a mile, almost as much as a London cabbie. I've lost 11 pounds in weight and my legs are shorter and hairier - that must be worth a bob or two. So, how about one last push to beat the Ten Grand Total? Chris the Velo Fellow
The longest day 2010: Now look what you've done!
I've counted all the money in so far. I am about to post to H4H cheques and cash valued after reclaimed tax at £4,900. Including reclaimed tax and after deducting their fee, JustGiving have already paid £8,334. That’s a grand total, so far, of £13,234 to Help for Heroes -- more than double my original target and £6.50 for every mile cycled. And there is still more money to collect. This is a measure of my gratitude to you for joining me in supporting this great Charity and, through them, our injured soldiers. Thank you very much. You should be proud of yourselves. Chris Irven
Sunday 4 July 2010: American Independence Day
I've been ticked off by a naval friend for only speaking of soldiers, when I should have included Royal Marines who are also among our wounded. And of course he's right; but I was using the word generically -- by 'soldier' I meant to include all fighting men and women in whatever Arm. So, my apologies if I have been misunderstood. In future I shall speak of our wounded, service men and women alike. Today is American Independence Day, and it brings to mind the work H4H are doing to give our wounded heroes the vital independence they need. So it's good to be able to tell you that all you generous people, whether giving through this website or by other means, have now exceeded the £14K 'ceiling' I was aiming for. You have donated £14,161 and money is still coming in. Dare we go for £15K? Chris Irven