Ambitious cycle challenge fundraiser target goes ‘through the roof’

Our Thomas’s Fund co-founder has returned from her tandem cycle challenge having raised a ‘mind-blowing’ £22,000 and smashing all targets.

Over the last two weeks, Lucy Smith and her cycling buddy Mike Ives rode their tandem bike 1,027 miles from Lands’ End to John O’Groats, across exhausting long stretches and backbreaking mountains, as part of #tandemlejog2020 – a Thomas’s Fund fundraiser she had postponed for two years.

Lucy and Mike were joined by Matt Plews for the whole adventure on his solo bike, supported by Lucy’s husband Tim Smith and joined by friends from their cycling club Welland Valley CC for several days too.

Heart-warming messages of support have been flooding in for the team on social media from famous names and sportspeople including cycling Tour De France veteran and commentator Dan Lloyd, Phillipe Gilbert, current pro cyclist and former world champion, and Earl Spencer, Patron to the charity, sent a personal message congratulating the whole #teamtandemlejog2020 on their success.

The money is the most we have has ever raised through one campaign and will go towards providing music therapy for children and young people with life-limiting illnesses or life-threatening conditions in Northamptonshire. It will also help fund a pilot project at Kettering General Hospital’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit which will support babies and their parents in their transition home.

Lucy said: “To have returned home having raised this much is just extraordinary, and I really don’t have the words to describe how I feel about it. Humbled, emotional, immensely grateful, and proud would most definitely be amongst them though. It has been the toughest thing I have ever done. The whole team effort is something I will never forget.

“The challenge very nearly never happened due to Covid initially, and then my husband Tim, who was meant to complete it with me, found out he needed two emergency back operations and spent more than three weeks in hospital. Luckily Mike was able to step in at the very last minute and we smashed it beyond all expectations.

“This money has been raised through sponsorship, donations, raffle tickets sales and other activities, and will make such a difference to the children and families we support with music therapy. We would like to thank everybody who has encouraged, supported, and donated to make this whole challenge such a success.”

Earl Spencer is Thomas’s Fund’s leading patron added: “I just want to send my congratulations to Lucy and the team on this amazing achievement. The financial success has been greater than we all anticipated and hoped for and will enable this fabulous charity to continue their great efforts.”

Sponsorship and donations are still being collected:

To see a short video, showing a montage of the ride and the fundraising reveal on its completion, please click on the link below.