Lancaster: pedal power raises money for Hospice Care

Forge Europa cycling team

Forge Europa cycling team

A small group of CAFOD supporters have raised an amazing £30,000 by cycling 75 miles along the Cumbria Way to support Hospice Care at home in the Lancaster Diocese and in Africa.

Peter Barton,48, MD of local Ulverston company Forge Europa, which specialises in low energy lighting design, Mark McIntosh,28, from Barrow, who also works for the company and Peter’s son Joseph,16, completed the gruelling challenge this month in an impressive five hours. Head of Carlisle Churches Together, Kevin Crawley, joined them for some of the journey in solidarity as did colleagues, friends and family.

The determined group were waved off from Our Lady and St Joseph’s Church in Carlisle by parish priest Fr Michael Murphy, CAFOD’s diocesan manager for Lancaster Rosa Trelfa and other CAFOD supporters. They were greeted at the end of their challenging journey by Canon Sean Flannery of St Mary’s in Ulverston.

The Forge Europa cycling team wanted to raise the money to support Hospice Care at home and abroad. Some of the money will support St Mary’s Hospice in Ulverston, which provides specialist supportive and palliative care for people throughout South Cumbria. The money will also purchase 300 bicycles for community health workers in Africa, who bring life-saving medical treatment, care and vital support and counselling to people living in remote areas where help simply isn’t available.

Peter Barton said: “The support from local parishes and the whole community, individuals and businesses has been astonishing; there has been a real sense of community. What started as a small idea has really captured people’s imaginations as they heard the difference their donations would be making locally and around the world.

“My family has always supported CAFOD personally, but it’s been an eye-opening experience for the company too. It’s got me thinking that there is a whole industry that has built up out of team building courses for businesses.  We should aim to put this energy to good use by encouraging companies to do a charitable event instead – it will have the same result and deliver something more constructive, helping others in the process.“

CAFOD Lancaster Diocesan Manager Rosa Trelfa said: “We’re really proud of all of the cyclists - what a tremendous effort.  This is true pedal power and their efforts will make a huge difference to people’s lives. Special thanks also to the loyal supporters who followed them along the way, supplying food, drink and plenty of encouragement.”

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