Hospice supporter and Ride the Reservoir participant Richard, is taking part in this years event in memory of his good friend and fellow cyclist, Alan.
“After retiring in 2014 after 40 years of teaching, I wanted something to both occupy me and keep me fit and so my daughter suggested a bike.
“I hadn’t cycled since 1974 and whilst I found cycling beneficial to my health, I missed the camaraderie of riding with others and so joined the Bournville Gentle Cycling Club, where I met the person I wish to remember in my ride in July.
“Alan was an inspiration to me and those that joined the group. He was always eager to encourage and cajole with his positive banter and was a reason I stopped with the group over the last 6 years. Our friendship was very important last year when the first lockdown occurred and we were restricted to meeting up with just one other person. Alan became my ‘cycling buddy’. When things got tough or the weather was unpleasant Alan persuaded me to keep cycling. Without him I am sure that I would not have got out of bed some mornings.”
It was during their rides together when Alan told Richard of his support of the Hospice, and his wish to continue raising funds for Birmingham St Mary’s in the future. Sadly, Alan passed away over the New Year, much to the shock of his loved ones, and donations were collected in aid of the Hospice at his funeral.
“Alan had asked for donations to be made to the Hospice, however as numbers were restricted at the funeral, many members of our cycling group thought it would be a good idea to remember Alan in a special memorial ride.
“The Ride the Reservoir event seemed an ideal opportunity to not only remember Alan, but to also raise funds for a cause that was close to his heart.”