Cyclist Robert Cleave is counting down to the start of a round-the-world bicycle ride that will see him cover 18,000 miles and raise money for two charities.
The Bramcote man sets off on Saturday 7th April and will arrive back home somewhere between a year and 18 months later. He’s not looking to break any records but is committed to raising money for Traidcraft Exchange and Cancer Research UK.
It’s 40 years since Robert first dreamed of doing a long-distance cycle ride; he has cycled around much of North West France and completed the 1,000 miles from John O’Groats to Land’s End. Now that he has retired as an IT manager for a global health company, the world beckons.
He’s calling the epic journey Robert’s Ride 18000 – Cycling Around the World the Life Changing Way.
He said: “It’s all about transforming lives. As an IT manager, I was dedicated to root causing problems – dealing with an issue so that the problem didn’t arise in the first place. This is exactly what Cancer Research UK are doing – applying medical science to beating cancer.
“And as one of the first Traidcraft representatives in the UK in the 1980s, I’ve always been impressed and inspired by the charity’s approach to fighting global poverty through trade.”
Robert, who is also very involved with the Church of England in the Diocese of Southwell & Nottingham, having served for many years on Bishop’s Council, Diocesan Synod and his local Parochial Church Council, has had a few hitches to contend with along the way; osteoarthritis in his right hip meant he needed a hip replacement, and shortly before retirement he was hit by a car while cycling home from work and broke his shoulder in several places.
Now, however, he is fit and training for his epic adventure:
He continued: “It’s going very well. I’m building up both the miles and the legs. The bike’s ready and I’m assembling the equipment and finalising the plans. I look forward to once again arriving in France to revisit a few of the places that I saw on my earlier tour before I head off for new territory and new experiences.”
Robert will be leaving from Bramcote Hills Park at 10am on 7 April, a launch event to which family, friends and community groups are all invited.
“Join me and bring your bike – and your helmet of course – so we can cycle the first mile together before I depart for the remaining 17,999,” he added.
To follow Robert’s blog, make a contribution to his charities, or contact Robert or his team of UK-based Co-ordinators, see his website and film at www.robertsride18000.com