The team, consisting of Dean Etchells, Helen Preece, Lisa Trotter, Stuart Wraith, Allen Bellamy and John Robinson will cycle over 350 miles as part of Help for Heroes’ annual, epic Big Battlefield Bike Ride, which this year goes from Sainte-Mère-Église to Paris in memory of the 75th anniversary of the D-Day landings.
John Robinson, Retail Operations Manager and Sixth Generation Family Member, said: “Before we took on this challenge some of the team hadn’t even been on a bike in over a decade, so it’s been a huge learning curve and challenge for us! We’re all hoping that our months of training will help on the journey, but the chance to raise money for a wonderful charity will certainly be motivation enough to make sure we reach the finish line.”
Thanks to sponsorships from suppliers and fundraising events such as supermarket bag packs, charity quiz nights and even eating challenges on Facebook that would make a bush tucker trial look tame, the team have already raised over £17,500 with just over a week to go before the event.
“We’ve really thrown ourselves into fundraising for the event,” continued John. “We are delighted with how much we’ve raised so far but there’s still plenty of time before the big event to raise evenmore!”
For one member of the team, Allen Bellamy, the ride means more than just raising money for the charity. It’s a way to celebrate and remember the service men in his family including his Uncle who took part in the D-Day landings.
“My family have a proud history of serving in the Armed Forces,” explained Allen, Robinsons Tech Service Manager. “My grandmother’s brother served in the First World War, my uncle Arthur was in the navy during the Second World War whilst my cousin John, his son Paul and my nephew all served in the Grenadier Guards. It will be an honour to ride for all of them but especially in memory of my uncle John who was part of the D-Day landings with the Royal Marines 46 Commando. He fought through France, Germany and Holland where he was wounded. After the war, he became a Drayman for a brewery where he stayed until his retirement and where I started my career in Brewing as an apprentice Engineer; the affiliation between Help for Heroes and Robinsons is the perfect way for me to pay tribute to him!”
The event continues the partnership of Robinsons Brewery and Help for Heroes. Since joining forces in early 2018, Robinsons has contributed close to £100,000 towards the charity through fundraising events taking place across Robinsons’ 260 pubs across the North West, Cumbria and North Wales and directly from sales of TROOPER Light Brigade – a 4.1% ABV English golden ale created by Robinsons, Help for Heroes and British rock legends Iron Maiden – of which 5p from every bottle sold is donated directly to the charity.
David Martin, Head of Supporter Fundraising at Help for Heroes, added: “We are so grateful to Robinsons Brewery who epitomise our amazing supporters, pushing themselves to go above and beyond to raise as much as they can for our sick and wounded Veterans, some of whom have injuries so severe they are wholly dependent on round-the-clock care to perform even the most routine tasks. They are an awesome addition to this year’s Big Battlefield Bike Ride team and, with their help, we can give Veterans one less battle to fight and improve their quality of life.”
Donations for the team are still open and Robinsons will be posting updates from their challenge from June 10thacross Robinsons’ social media channels.
To show your support to the team please visit: www.justgiving.com/companyteams/BBR19
For more information on Robinsons Brewery please visit www.robinsonsbrewery.com or follow Robinsons Brewery on Facebook: www.facebook.com/robinsonsbrewery, on Twitter:www.twitter.com/robbiesbrewery (@robbiesbrewery) and Instagram:www.instagram.com/robinsonsbrewery
For more information on Help for Heroes please visit www.helpforheroes.org.uk and follow Help for Heroes at www.facebook.com/helpforheroes, Twitter: www.twitter.com/helpforheroes and Instagram:www.instagram.com/helpforheroes