A COURAGEOUS group of friends from Ellesmere Port braved the elements to cycle from Blackpool to Paris.
The friends decided to use pedal power to raise £10,376 for the Hospice of the Good Shepherd.
Group representative Lewis Walters said: “We started the bike ride on Thursday, June 2, from Blackpool Tower and completed our gruelling challenge on Tuesday, June 7, at Eiffel Tower, Paris.
“In total we cycled 540 miles, the first three days in glorious sunshine the last three days in pouring rain – but you can only get wet once so we just got on with it.
“We chose the hospice as our charity because it serves the local community and the hospice cared for my Mum, Avril, and Bryan’s mother-in-law, Irene Goolding.
“It was thinking about these two lovely ladies, who are still sadly missed, that kept us going when the journey got tough.
“It was also the thought of everyone who had sponsored us and given us encouragement on our journey, to whom we would like to say a huge thank you.”
He added: “There was plenty of team spirit along the way and we were grateful for the help from our support team, Mike Sheppard and Alec Cooper.
“We all really enjoyed the experience, including getting soaking wet, getting lost in France and peddling uphill after hill after hill.”
The fundraisers now plan to cycle from Paris to Pisa in August 2012, taking in 800 miles across Europe.
Hospice fundraising and marketing manager Amanda Le Bretton said: “We are absolutely amazed by the amount of sponsorship the team have raised and cannot thank them enough for their overwhelming efforts, a true inspiration especially undertaking such a difficult challenge!”