The CitySprint Cycle Team tackled the 55-mile bike ride from London to Brighton in aid of the Trussell Trust, and raised a whopping £22,065 for the anti-poverty charity!
Thirteen members of the senior leadership team came together to raise vital funds for the Trussell Trust
by cycling 55 miles from London to Brighton. While some considered themselves avid cyclists, and some not even owning a bike, it was proving to be a tough challenge that the team would collectively tackle for a great cause.
In the build-up to the bike ride, members of the team hopped on their bikes to train for the big day. A number of our cyclists weren’t fond of training on hills and having to walk after spending hours on the saddle; we even heard of a few of them forgetting to unclip their feet afterwards, leading to a number of falls! Although the training itself was tough, the cycle team were aware of the significance of this bike ride and what it means for the Trussell Trust. The early mornings, tough training sessions and sore bodies were worth it, knowing they are making a difference to people’s lives.
In the UK, more than 14 million people are living in poverty – 4.5 million of those are children. With the cost of living continuing to rise, it's more important now than ever to donate what we can to support those in need. Since 2021, we’ve been a dedicated partner to the Trussell Trust, with our service centres up and down the country regularly collecting donations for their local foodbanks. While food and essential item donations are extremely important to ensure the smooth operations of local foodbanks, fundraising is crucial to allow the charity to campaign for long-term change.
All of us at CitySprint felt immense pride for our Cycle Team, knowing they were facing a huge challenge head on to make a positive difference in people's lives. Colleagues all over the UK shared their thoughts on social media, contributed towards the donation pot and even submitted videos of well wishes in the lead up to the bike ride.
On the night before the ride, The CitySprint Cycle Team came together in London to prepare for the day ahead. After a good night’s sleep and a very early alarm call, the team were ready and lined up to go in the semi-dark dawn at 6am in Clapham, London.
After leaving London, the ride took in the leafy streets of several Surrey towns and villages until arriving at the daunting Ditchling Beacon. Famous for its one-mile climb, ascending 248 metres in total, it was the ride’s biggest challenge for already very weary riders – although once at the top, there were well deserved refreshments available.
Once completed, the riders were able to look forward to the five-mile descent towards the finish line at Brighton’s seafront and finally got a chance to celebrate their fantastic achievement.
David Humby, Regional Key Account Manager Healthcare, was first to cross the finishing line at an impressive 3 hours, 19 minutes, and 39 seconds! He was closely followed by James Burrell, General Manager for Pharmacy and Logistics, and Mark Footman, Chief Operating Officer.
David Humby has commented,
“So London2Brighton 2022 is done and dusted. What’s impressive is that the majority of the team didn’t have bikes before the idea was suggested. That all said everybody calling me a ‘pro’ was a little disconcerting and I did feel a little bit of pressure.
Leaving London in the fog and trying to spot the signs was a challenge I hadn’t anticipated but once into the suburbs I was ticking off the place names on a regular basis, also had James’ company for the first 30 miles which was good. It turns out that he’s a demon descender! I wasn’t overly worried about Ditchling Beacon as I’ve conquered it a few times before however it reminded me that nature is always in charge and the last time I rode up it was 20 years ago!
Did the last climb hurt- absolutely! But knowing that the generous donations were for those less fortunate than ourselves was worth it. Worrying about a hill doesn’t compare with the thought of worrying where the next meal will come from.
As for next year, maybe not but who knows- watch this space!”.
The bike ride proved a challenge for our cyclists, with steep ascents, crashes, broken chains and punctures, and even a few falls. Despite the challenges, our cyclists finished the 55-mile cycle safely, and feel immense pride and support from the CitySprint people and find comfort in knowing their efforts will make a real difference to people's lives.
As a result of the bike ride, CitySprint’s Cycle Team have successfully raised a whopping £22,065 for the Trussell Trust!
Sophie Carre, Head of Corporate Partnerships at the Trussell Trust has commented,
“We are incredibly grateful to all at CitySprint for their fundraising efforts. Your generosity is vital in helping us work towards our vision of a UK without the need for food banks.
We are seeing a worrying increase in need for support at our food banks with insight from the frontline of the crisis predicting that this winter will be much worse than the height of the pandemic as we expect hundreds of thousands more people to be forced to use a food bank for the first time. Food banks are also hit with the devastating pressures of higher costs and stock issues, making their work more challenging than ever before.
Your generous donation allows us to support the food banks in our network to provide thousands of emergency food parcels to people every day. It also ensures we can continue investing in preventative services that tackle the root causes of extreme poverty, so that no one need rely on emergency food to get by.
Thank you for choosing to stand alongside our network of food banks and people in financial crisis to support our movement for change."
We’d like to thank all contributors for their generous donations. If you’d like to find out more about how we support local communities, visit our dedicated page