Paul Taylor

From Shitterton to Twatt - the Moronic Moped Marathon

Fundraising for The Institute of Cancer Research (ICR)
raised of £1,800 target
by 1204 supporters
In memory of Alexis Leventis
The Institute of Cancer Research (ICR)

Verified by JustGiving

RCN HMRC Registered
We make the discoveries that defeat cancer to improve the lives of patients everywhere


In memory of my dear friend Alexis Leventis I will be riding a 49cc moped on a epic journey of around 1800 miles (2900km) through some of the UK`s silliest and rudest named places.

The expedition will take place in August 2021 and starts in Shitterton in Dorset on the 18th  and winds its way through salubriously named places such as Happy Bottom Nature Reserve, Ass Hill, Crazies Hill, Pishill, The Knob, Titty-Ho, Willey, Butthole Lane, Pensitone, Netherthong, Slack Bottom Road, Bedlam, Crackpot (I think I may have lived there in a past life) , Booze (there too), Pity Me (by this point you really should), Cocksburnspath, Wallyford, Brawl (and many others) before we arrive at the charmingly titled Twatt in the Orkney Isles.

The return journey includes delights such as Dull, Cockermouth and Cow Ark before our final destination , the aptly named Bell End. Unfortunately it`s not possible to show the full map on this page but  but If you have google maps you can see all of the 46 absurd destinations by copying and pasting this address into your web browser:

My chosen steed is a Slovenian Tomos XL45 Classic (called XL45 as it has a dizzying top speed of 45km/h or 28mph) , which means I expect my 1800 odd mile marathon journey to take 12 days at the break neck average speed of approx 20mph! As if the monotonous lack of speed was not enough pain, the Tomos possesses a seat that has all the comfort and pliability of concrete! At least fuel won't cost me a fortune, as it returns over 100 miles to the gallon! It is a basic machine with kickstart, drum brakes, no battery and all lights work off a magneto which should make any night time riding interesting! To add to the pain I will be camping (apart from 3 nights where I will be passing Home, my mums and on the ferry from Orkney to Aberdeen) in a tiny tent, and all my gear will have to be carried on my trusty steed (no fancy back up vehicles here!) Will it make it up Scotland's steepest slopes? Will it make the 1800 mile journey at all? I will be posting regular updates and photos on this page so stay tuned to find out! You can also follow Instagram page moronicmopedmarathon.

All proceeds go to The Institute of Cancer Research, who together with their hospital partner The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust are rated as one of the most important cancer research and treatment centres in the world. The ICR has been around for over 100 years and are responsible for many of the discoveries that have revolutionised cancer treatments, and have discovered more new cancer drugs than any other academic centre in the world. The ICR was ranked as the leading higher education institution in the UK for the impact of their research on society - their breakthroughs in new drugs and treatments are rapidly brought into practice in the NHS and around the world and then taught in their world leading degree courses. You can read more about the ICR and their many outstanding achievements on the link at the bottom of the page.

My friend Alexis was the kindest, most generous and level headed person I have ever known, and was a well known and respected Classic Car restorer. He was also the bravest person I've ever met. He first had surgery for Lymphoma at only 18 years old, and had several further operations over the years. Even when it was clear he would not survive the latest incident, Alexis remained positive saying he had nearly died at 18 so was thankful for those extra years. He helped so many people over the years and treated people warmly, giving everybody a chance (often more than one!) and ensured everyone he met felt welcome and often well fed too! In a world full of selfishness and cruelty, he was one of the few genuine, generously spirited and warm-hearted people on this planet. Alexis was 55 when he died last year leaving behind his wife and son, mother and sister and lots of heartbroken friends. Cancer has also taken one of  Alexis`s sisters at a young age and his father too. It has also taken my uncle Mike , both my grandparents Howard and Ruby, my wife's friends Clare-Marie Grigg and Lisa Black, my good friend Dave Menzies`s mate Rick Salisbury and my sisters friend Saskia Spencer. All these wonderful people who were taken from us way too soon by Cancer. During my years working for the NHS I met many people who had terminal diagnoses, who's strength and positivity was truly inspirational.

I was sick of cancer taking the lives of so many wonderful people and felt I had to do something to help beat this awful disease. I thought this trip was a suitably ridiculous place to start and as Alexis was a motorcyclist as well as a car nut; two wheels was not only appropriate but made it more of a adventure! I talked about my plans for this trip with him and he thought it was funny and a bit mad, I think he would be surprised I was actually daft enough to go through with it!

Aside from the kind help of Adam at Oxon Autos (who cleaned out my carburettor for free) and the lads at Merityres Wantage (who refused payment for tyre fitting), the moped, all its maintenance and parts, camping equipment, and all costs are being paid for out of my own pocket and all funds raised go directly to the ICR - paid into their Bank account by Just Giving.

One in two people in the UK born after 1960 will be diagnosed with some form of cancer during their lifetime. Thanks to research by institutions like the ICR treatments and survival rates are improving, but there are still more than 450 people dying from cancer every day in the UK. So, this is for Alexis and everyone who has lost loved ones or whose lives have been affected by Cancer. Let`s help the ICR achieve their vision of a world where people can live their lives free of cancer as a life-threatening disease.

Please donate what you can spare ,I have set my fundraiser target low (about £1 per mile) and really hope to smash it! Every penny helps save lives, improve cancer treatment and helps to get rid of this evil bell-end that is cancer!

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About the charity

The Institute of Cancer Research (ICR)

Verified by JustGiving

RCN HMRC Registered
Our mission is to make the discoveries that defeat cancer. Our vision is that people can live their lives free of cancer as a life-threatening disease. We work on all cancer types incl. children's cancers, pancreatic, brain and lung cancer. Please support our work and help us defeat cancer.

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