London to Paris cycle challenge to highlight Transaid’s Silver Anniversary

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International development organisation Transaid is making an early start on the celebrations for its silver jubilee next year, with the launch of a London to Paris cycle challenge. 

Riders from across the transport and logistics industry are invited to saddle up next Autumn, as Transaid prepares for a team to cycle 187 miles over three days from London’s Greenwich Observatory to the Eiffel Tower, in the French capital.

The group will depart Greenwich on 22 September 2023 and pedal to the heart of Paris over three full days of cycling, with funds raised being used to support Transaid’s life-saving work in sub-Saharan Africa, where it is focused on improving road safety and increasing access to healthcare for rural communities.

Announcing this latest challenge, Florence Bearman, Transaid’s Acting Co-Chief Executive, says: “Our first ever European cycle challenge was to Paris in 2012, and it proved so successful we returned on our bikes again in 2017. Naturally it has a special place in our hearts, and we are delighted to mark Transaid’s silver jubilee with a return to this beautiful city, this time following a different route.

“Our cycle challenges are incredibly popular and offer a fantastic chance for supporters to raise essential funds for our life saving programmes. London to Paris will be a great opportunity to network with colleagues from across the industry, both during the ride and in a series of team meals – culminating in a well-deserved celebratory dinner on the final night.”

The route comprises a mixture of on-road and traffic-free sections, running primarily on quieter rural roads, with some busier sections as the group travels out of London, and into Paris. Whilst in France and where available, use will be made of the ‘EuroVelo’ cycle route network.

The challenge has already sparked interest ahead of its formal launch, with Paul Smith, Director – Supply Chain Operations at GXO, amongst the first to sign up.

He says: “Having recently completed Transaid’s Cycle Malawi challenge, I was able to witness first-hand the need to engage and support transport safety in sub-Saharan Africa. Through training and education, Transaid’s work is paramount to improving road safety.

“As a newly appointed Ambassador for Transaid, I’d be delighted for people to join me on Transaid’s next cycle challenge in 2023.”

The terrain throughout the challenge is relatively flat, and there are only a few rolling hills along the way. Riders will climb approximately 3,800 feet over 65 miles of cycling on the first day in the saddle, 2,000 feet over 70 miles on the second day, and 2,400 feet over 52 miles on the final day’s riding.

Transaid is welcoming entries from individuals and teams, and demand is expected to be high. A registration fee of £149 is required and all participants are asked to raise a minimum sponsorship of £1,800. The package includes four nights’ accommodation with meals, refreshment stops on riding days, luggage transfer and access to support vehicles along the route.

For more information about the challenge, and to sign up, contact Anna Giavedoni on +44 (0)20 7387 8136 or via email at anna@transaid.org. For more information and to find out how you can support the organisation visit www.transaid.org.