St Albans man takes on cycling challenge in memory of partner
PUBLISHED: 13:23 26 March 2019 | UPDATED: 09:21 27 March 2019
A former St Albans man is taking on a ‘Pedal to the Peaks’ challenge for charity after his partner died from breast cancer.
Iain Holiday, 28, will cycle between Britain’s three highest peaks; Scafell Pike, Ben Nevis and Snowdon, and climb them within five days to raise money for Cancer Research UK.
Iain’s is taking on the challenge in memory of his partner Helen West, who died nine weeks ago. Helen was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2016, shortly after she and Ian moved in together in Cambridge.
While she was undergoing treatment in April last year Iain took on four marathons in four weeks to raise money, raising a total of £7,000. This year he set his target at £6,000 due to working at a smaller company and having fewer colleagues who can donate, but has already raised nearly £3,000.
Iain, who lived in St Albans for 24 years and works as a project manager, said: “I’ll start at Snowdon and then finish at the bottom of Ben Nevis. I’m trying to just get cycling - the hiking is not too difficult.
“When my partner passed away I got a lot of responsibilities so it’s just getting the mileage in on the bike. It’s about four hours cycling on a Sunday.
“Luckily I live three miles from work so I can cycle to work - I just have to get up early enough to walk the dog beforehand.”
Iain is aiming to complete his challenge in July this year, and is currently trying to organise his accommodation and route. He is trying to get in touch with Greg James from BBC Radio One, who completed the Pedal to the Peaks challenge recently, in order to see his itinerary.
He said: “I’m a bit apprehensive because I’ve never cycled that sort of distance. The walking I’m not bothered about.
“It’s two days of 130 miles and 140 miles - that will be the difficult part.
“It’s eight or nine hours of cycling a day. I don’t enjoy cycling - I enjoy running but I broke myself doing the marathon so I don’t do marathons now.
After finishing the Pedal to the Peaks, Iain is unsure what his next challenge will be. He said: “It’s a lot of effort to fundraise. Last year it’s how I de-stressed and it’s a bit of a distraction.
“I’d like to say I would do more, but I keep having to go bigger.
To donate go to https://fundraise.cancerresearchuk.org/page/helenwest