980 Mile Cycle Ride To Raise funds For Formby Befriending Scheme
This September, local solicitor Liz Foggin and her husband Matt are cycling from Lands End to John O’Groats (“LEJOG”). They will be cycling 981.4 miles; climbing 52,009 feet (Everest is only 29,030 feet from sea level) in just nine days. Are they mad? “Probably” says Liz “but it’s not supposed to be easy, otherwise everyone would do it.”
Liz adds: “Personally, I can’t say that it is something that was always on my bucket list, but I am looking forward to it (with nervous trepidation). We’ve been training hard but I don’t think anything can prepare us for the challenge of cycling over 100 miles per day back-to-back for nine days on the trot. Being a wife, mother, daughter, owner of business (Autumn Years Law) and all of juggling that usually entails, finding time to train has not been easy.
Also, training around Formby and Southport is… well… flat (unless you count Formby Bridge as a hill), so they have spent many a weekend travelling further afield in search of hills. Big hills (Horseshoe Pass, the Tumble, Blaze Hill, Lamaload). Mid-week they’ve trained by riding loops around Clieves Hills in Ormskirk.
This year’s weather has had an impact too. The strong crosswinds earlier in the year made training dangerous, although Liz says that she has developed the mantra of ‘the headwind is my friend’ only because it makes them train smarter and harder. The excessive heat has brought difficulties too.
Liz says “I know that it is not just the physical challenge of cycling from A to B but also the mental task of undertaking such an arduous journey. I also appreciate we are very lucky – we are physically able to undertake this ride and not everyone has that opportunity in life. Therefore, we really want to raise as much money as we can for the Formby Befriending Scheme because I know first-hand from my work as a local solicitor specialising in legal matters for people in their autumn years (and through my voluntary work as a member of Formby Squirrels Rotary Club) just how important it is for people to maintain as much social interaction as possible to live life well. I also know that this is not easy if you have health or mobility problems or start to feel isolated and I think that it’s great that the Formby Befriending Scheme gives Formby and Hightown residents additional comfort and support.”
Matt and Liz are doing the ride through Deloitte’s annual “Ride Across Britain”. It is an organised event with 800 cyclists taking part. It takes place between 8th to 16th September. They have purchased their places directly so every single penny they raise will go straight to the Formby Befriending Scheme in providing companionship and support to older people in Formby, for example the recent very successful Holiday at Home series of events.
Ruefully Liz adds “Hopefully we will be blessed with good weather for the ride – not too hot, not too wet and a nice tailwind would be lovely – I can but hope.”
They would be delighted if you would like to sponsor their ride and have set up a donation page at http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/giving/ (Search for Liz Foggin or Formby Befriending Scheme). Alternatively you can call Liz directly at Autumn Years Law on 01704 870404 or the Formby Befriending Scheme on 07437 479417.