The Gary Whitehead Charity Bike Ride from Southport is taking on pancreatic cancer – the deadliest common cancer – through a gruelling 4-day bike ride covering 13 locations that spell out Gary’s name, on 12th September 2019. From Great Harwood to Yockenthwaite, Waddington to Dukes Folly, more than 40 family and friends on bicycles will leave at 9am on Thursday from Gary’s shop, Southport Tiles on Seabank Road. Gary’s family is determined to raise much needed funds for faster diagnosis of the disease.

The Gary Whitehead Charity Bike Ride chose to support the charity in memory of family man Gary, who died on 17th February after a late diagnosis of the cancer. Gary (56) – also known as Gaz – was a well-known and loved character in the town. Familiar to many across the north-west due to his business Southport Tiles, Gary also worked on the railway in Southport and played football for over 10 local football teams including The Ship, Birkdale, Hesketh Casuals FC and The Dales. His funeral in March was attended by several hundred friends, family and supporters; many are taking part in the charity ride.

Gary’s wife, Tracy Whitehead said: “This really will be emotionally and physically challenging for everyone involved. Gary was diagnosed too late for treatment and we are devastated by his untimely death. We want to help others avoid going through what we had to. We are overwhelmed with the support from friends, businesses and even strangers across Southport. Gary was loved by so many and this is being done in his honour. He would be very proud.”

Sue Collins, Director of Fundraising at Pancreatic Cancer UK, said: “We are delighted The Gary Whitehead Bike Ride is supporting us and we would like to wish them the very best of luck. The funds raised will help us invest in vital research to see the breakthroughs we need, and be a voice for everyone affected by the disease.”

If you would like to support The Gary Whitehead Charity Bike Ride you can do so at

CJ Cycles, CF Global, Ghandi Photography, Paul Yaffe, Sacrebleu , Bistrot Verite, Replica Print, Leisure Lakes Bikes, Barrett & Coe Photographers, The Fig Bistro, Southport Embroidery Printing, Jon Karl Hairdressers, Hamlets Sandwich Bar, The Kicking Donkey, Southport Tiles, Sitting Pretty and Massage Therapy Rooms have all donated to support the ride.