An Eastbourne man has cycled the entire coast of England and Wales to raise money for Chestnut Tree House Children’s Hospice.
It has taken more than a year to plan and complete, with several set-backs along the way, but Eastbourne man Tom Burns has now completed his epic cycle ride around the coastline of England and Wales – a journey of 5,334 miles in total.
Tom originally set off in June 2014 but was knocked off of his bike on the Isle of Sheppey. With a shattered knee and a crumpled bike, Tom was forced to halt his challenge and return to Eastbourne to undergo surgery on his knee.
He restarted in February of this year and completed the challenge in two stages – first travelling East from his parents’ home in Berwick and finishing in Berwick-Upon-Tweed. After returning to Berwick he then set off again in May this year to travel West to Gretna before following the Scottish border back to Berwick-Upon-Tweed.
Tom travelled alone, carrying all of his supplies, sleeping wherever he could find a free bed or campsite and battling whatever the Great British weather threw at him. And it definitely presented him with challenges, from 45mph winds that landed him in A&E to flooding that resulted in near hypothermia.
Tom said, “There have been some truly dreadful times, but some sublime ones too.”
Tom undertook the challenge after suffering from mental illness for a number of years. He wanted to get fitter, stronger and challenge himself while benefitting others. He said, “This challenge has changed my life. I have cycled myself back to mental health.”
Tom raised £1,712.54 for Chestnut Tree and is hoping to complete more challenges.
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