A mother has signed up for a long-distance charity cycle ride to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War.
Jane Tickell, 53, from Eaton Bray, will take part in Help for Heroes’ flagship event, the Big Battlefield Bike Ride, which will see up to 200 fundraisers ride across Northern France from June 10 to 16.
The 2018 edition will start in Compiegne, the site of the signing of the Armistice, and cycle through the battlefields of the Somme, before heading to Mons, where the first and last shots of the war were fired.
Jane said she felt it was right to take part in what would be an “emotional and poignant” event.
She said: “With it being the end of the Great War, I wanted to do something to commemorate those who fell.
“I think that the experience will be humbling, but the camaraderie on the trip will help.”
The 53-year-old has only recently returned to the saddle after a gap of 40 years, but has recent form after a cycling holiday in India.
She has been an avid trekker for nine years, but despite her fondness for walking, she wanted to try something new.
She said: “The experience of cycling in India was so uplifting, and you could say that I have now got some experience of cycling on tricky roads.
“The BBBR will be the first time I have been on a road bike, and if you saw the roads and potholes in my village then you would understand why you need a mountain bike!”
Jane has already started fundraising for the trip, receiving donations from family and friends, and will also be holding a shop stall, selling items from Help for Heroes.
With the BBBR many months away, the nerves haven’t kicked in.
But Jane was realistic about her capabilities.
She said: “I will be entering the challenge on my own, and will probably be at the back of the pack.
“But it is about raising money for the charity and those in need, and it is a great incentive to keep cycling.”
> If you are interested in a fresh challenge, or have a keen interest in history, then visit www.helpforheroes.org.uk/give-support/challenges/big-battlefield-bike-ride-2018/
> To donate to Jane’s JustGiving page, visit: justgiving.com/fundraising/jane-tickell1