A GROUP of cycling friends are embarking on their toughest challenge yet to raise money for a cause close to their hearts.
Graham Smith, 48, from Stroud and Michael Stevenson, from Edge, are among a group of six who are cycling from Land’s End to John O’Groats.
They are raising money for the Multiple Sclerosis Society after Graham’s wife, Tracy, was diagnosed with MS in 2007.
Since Tracy was diagnosed with MS, she has had problems with her vision, tremors in her hands and has lost movement and strength in her legs.
Ordinary tasks such as holding a cup are difficult, and household chores such as cooking, making a drink, cleaning or filling in a reply slip for a school trip are beyond her.
She now needs help with personal hygiene, has to have her food cut up for her, needs a straw to drink, and needs a wheelchair to travel more than a few meters.
“It has got worse in recent years to the point where she struggles to walk to the car and has difficulty with her balance,” said Graham, a self-employed plumber.
“The group have taken on a few rides before but this is the first one I have been a part of.
“We’re hoping to raise awareness for a charity that does a lot of good work and it is also a ride that I have wanted to do for a while.”
Some research the MS Society has carried out has lead to a trial into stem cell therapy which Tracy has been accepted on and will begin in three weeks time.
The group of cyclists set off on Thursday and will finish next Sunday, riding around 100 miles a day.
To donate text MFMS55 ( and the number of pounds you want to donate) to 70070.
See the group’s progress by visiting their Facebook page, Miles For MS LEJOG 2016.