Fundraisers put their best pedal forwards for St Albans’ annual bike ride

PUBLISHED: 13:00 16 May 2018 | UPDATED: 13:06 16 May 2018

The St Albans Charity Cycle Ride (Picture: Karen Mullinex)

The St Albans Charity Cycle Ride (Picture: Karen Mullinex)

Archant

More than a thousand cyclists got on their bikes on Sunday for the annual St Albans Charity Cycle Ride.

The St Albans Charity Cycle Ride (Picture: Karen Mullinex)The St Albans Charity Cycle Ride (Picture: Karen Mullinex)

The cycle ride, organised by the three Rotary Clubs of St Albans, gave riders the option of cycling a 10, 20, 30 or 40-mile route through the countryside.

Karen Mullinex, a former member of the Rotary Club of St Albans Priory, described the ride as “a lovely event that has inspired families to come back year after year”.

Rotary Club secretary Bede Fox with Mayor Mohammad Iqbal Zia (Picture: Karen Mullinex)Rotary Club secretary Bede Fox with Mayor Mohammad Iqbal Zia (Picture: Karen Mullinex)

Rotarians from all three local clubs were already setting up tables at Oaklands College by 7.30am, ready to serve bacon butties and register the incoming riders.

Karen said: “Almost immediately after I arrived the first few cyclists came and soon many, many more cars arrived with bicycles coming off roofs and tail bars and out of boots.

The Gaskin family at the St Albans Charity Cycle Ride (Picture: Karen Mullinex)The Gaskin family at the St Albans Charity Cycle Ride (Picture: Karen Mullinex)

“The cyclists were able to either cycle to their ability or stretch themselves. The weather was perfect, the threat of showers had disappeared, and it was nice and warm.
“Soon the first batch of riders were at the starting line, the St Albans Mayor was there to wish them well on their way and they were given the green light to go.

“Ahead of them stretched some of Hertfordshire’s most beautiful country lanes. It was lovely to see so many families taking part, some with a child on a seat on the parent’s bike, others on tandems.”

The St Albans Charity Cycle Ride (Picture: Karen Mullinex)The St Albans Charity Cycle Ride (Picture: Karen Mullinex)

While around 1,100 cyclists took part in the ride, cake stalls, ice-cream vans and a band were set up at Oaklands College to welcome them when they returned.

The riders wore official St Albans Charity Cycle Ride t-shirts, sponsored by Coupers Cars, Bradford and Howley estate agents and Debenhams Ottoway solicitors.

Zachary Weaver, six, with Mayor Mohammad Iqbal Zia. (Picture: Martin Weaver)Zachary Weaver, six, with Mayor Mohammad Iqbal Zia. (Picture: Martin Weaver)

The cycle ride is the biggest event that the three Rotary Clubs in St Albans organise each year. The money raised is split between different charities.

Karen specifically thanked staff from St John’s Ambulance, who were on hand to treat any injuries, as well as ‘The Bloodrunners’ motorbikes who marshalled the course to help cyclists.

Caroline Ellis, of the Rotary Club St Albans Priory, said: “It was brilliant. The weather was on our side and people had waited until the last minute so we had about 100 people entering on the day. Everyone worked really hard to make it happen.

“We are hoping to have raised £30,000 for charity.”

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CountryPhile

I should probably have taken the hint! Walking out into the garden recently an unprecedented flock of thirty or more crows raucously greeted me from the treetops at the bottom of my garden. Cawing and croaking these big, black birds clung clumsily to the top most branches and twigs, jostling and flapping to stay balanced in a constant flurry of feathers. There is always something ominous about crows – they are after all carrion crows, the vultures of the bird world – always watching for scraps and weakness that might mean their next meal.

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