Wheathampstead teen cycles length of Britain for charity
PUBLISHED: 14:34 03 September 2011
A DETERMINED teenager from Wheathampstead has completed the mammoth task of cycling the length of the British Isles in memory of his loving mother.
Billy Homan, 16, pedalled more than 800 miles from Cape Wrath in Scotland to the Isle of Wight in a bid to raise £3,000 for the Hospice of St Francis. But the inspirational teenager’s fundraising efforts have seen him and his family smash that target and raise a staggering £19,000.
The Berkhamsted-based hospice is particularly significant to Billy as it was where his mother, Sarah Homan, worked as a volunteer before her untimely death in December 2009.
Sarah, known as Sassy, died suddenly from a brain haemorrhage on Boxing Day aged just 49.
Billy undertook the Top to Bottom The Hard Way challenge with his father Nic and his school friend William Radford.
Nic, said: “Every leg of the ride was memorable but in different ways. The challenge meant carrying our luggage through the most beautiful yet hilly terrain in Scotland and England.
“We were amazed by the generosity of the public. There we were in Cape Wrath, the most remote place in Scotland, and we met some people from St Albans who heard our story and gave us a donation.
“Some days were easier than others, some we would simply wish to eradicate from our pain memory.
“At the end, we had a wonderful last leg to Ventnor with 29 cyclists joining in for the last push to the finishing line.
“Many members of our family and friends were present on a warm and sunny Ventnor beach to witness the last dash into the sea followed by cakes and champagne.”
Billy’s brothers, James and Thomas, joined in with the two-and-a-half week challenge but because of their full-time jobs they were only able to complete sections of the journey.
Sarah had worked as a supportive care volunteer at the hospice. It was her work that inspired Billy to fundraise, an idea which came to him last year when asked how he would like to spend his next holiday.
To add to the Homan family’s fundraising, visit www.justgiving.com/Billy-homan
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