More than 150 people – including Nottingham South MP Lillian Greenwood – took to their bikes on Saturday, 3 September to support The University of Nottingham’s Life Cycle team in their bid to raise £200,000 for charity.
Eleven members of University staff – led by Vice-Chancellor Professor David Greenaway – were met by a 400 strong crowd as they rode into Sutton Bonington Campus nine days in to a gruelling 1,000-mile ride from John O’Groats to Lands End.
Admitting that the welcome had left them feeling overwhelmed but motivated, the team are now even more determined to finish the ride and raise as much money as possible for the Sue Ryder Care Centre for the Study of Supportive, Palliative and End of Life Care (based at the University).
After catching his breath following nine days and 650 miles in the saddle, Prof Greenaway addressed the audience to thank the 26 participants who joined the team on the 50 mile Retford to Sutton Bonington leg of their challenge. He also praised the 120 people who took part in the Community Ride from University Park to Sutton Bonington.
He added: “The Sue Ryder Centre does incredibly important work, affecting so many people's lives and we are blessed to have such a high quality research facility at our University. Twenty-five years ago to the day, I lost my father to cancer, so this cause also has a very personal significance.”
The two rides are estimated to have raised over £10,000 for the fundraising effort, which now stands at £190,000. Donations from the friends and family of those that took part added a further £700 to the total, as guests were treated to a barbeque, live music from Miss 600 and family entertainment.
Jane Seymour, Sue Ryder Professor of Palliative and End of Life Studies at University of Nottingham, who completed the Retford to Sutton Bonington leg of the ride herself, told the audience that the money raised would play a vital role in improving the treatment of those at the end of life, worldwide.
She said: “Even though this country leads the way in palliative care, there are still people here as well as abroad that do not receive the best possible support at the end of their lives.
“The money raised through Life Cycle will go towards providing better education in this vital area of research. We want even more PhD students from across the world to come and study at the Centre and become leaders in the field in their home countries.”
In the final speech, Gillian Roberts from Life Cycle sponsors Freeth Cartwright, added: "It is fantastic to see so many people here to support this event. We are very proud to be sponsoring the ride, which gives us the opportunity to broaden the causes we support while continuing our longstanding relationship with the University of Nottingham."
After the speeches, Chris Newman (31), who led the Retford to Sutton Bonington riders to cross the finish line in 3 hours 17 minutes, revealed that the ride was the furthest he had ever completed.
He said: "I am a keen cyclist and the event has given me the chance to raise over £450 for a very worthy charity. When I told people what the sponsorship was for they were very generous. It has been great to be involved in such a wonderful event."
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Notes to editors: Please see the full list of Life Cycle riders below:
• Professor David Greenaway — Vice-Chancellor
• Professor Karen Cox — Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Staffing and Community
• Professor Alan Ford — Dean of the Faculty of Arts
• Mr Chris Jagger — Chief Estates and Facilities Officer
• Professor Nick Miles — Provost & CEO, University of Nottingham Ningbo China
• Dr Andrew Noyes — Professor of Education
• Mrs Kate Robertson — Director of Development and Alumni Relations
• Professor Chris Rudd — Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Knowledge Transfer and Business Engagement
• Professor David Walker — Professor of Paediatric Oncology
• Mr Steve Wright — University Driver
• Professor Neville Wylie — Dean, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus
More information about the Sue Ryder Care Centre for the Study of Supportive, Palliative and End of Life Care can be found at: http://www.nottingham.ac.uk/NMP/Research/SPC/index.aspx
The Centre led by Professors Jane Seymour and Karen Cox has a special collaborative relationship with the charity Sue Ryder Care, and is pleased to be able to share the name of this key provider of palliative and neurological care. For more information about the charity, please visit http://www.suerydercare.org/
Freeth Cartwright LLP: A spokesman for the company said: “We have been a key partner of the University now for over 15 years and want to support this event to demonstrate our commitment to them and their team who are an inspiration. It’s also underlines our commitment to our work in the Education Sector and the importance of putting something back into the community.” www.freethcartwright.co.uk
University Partnerships Programme (UPP): A spokesperson said: “UPP is delighted to be able to sponsor this laudable fundraising effort and hope the money the team have raised will give them the inspiration to overcome the challenges that they will face along the route. As soon as we found out about the fantastic cause, UPP were delighted to contribute as a mark of our continued relationship with The University of Nottingham.” http://www.upp-ltd.com/
The University of Nottingham, described by The Sunday Times University Guide 2011 as ‘the embodiment of the modern international university’, has award-winning campuses in the United Kingdom, China and Malaysia. It is ranked in the UK's Top 10 and the World's Top 75 universities by the Shanghai Jiao Tong (SJTU) and the QS World University Rankings. It was named ‘Europe’s greenest university’ in the UI GreenMetric World University Ranking, a league table of the world’s most environmentally-friendly higher education institutions, which ranked Nottingham second in the world overall.
The University is committed to providing a truly international education for its 40,000 students, producing world-leading research and benefiting the communities around its campuses in the UK and Asia.
More than 90 per cent of research at The University of Nottingham is of international quality, according to the most recent Research Assessment Exercise, with almost 60 per cent of all research defined as ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’. Research Fortnight analysis of RAE 2008 ranked the University 7th in the UK by research power.
The University’s vision is to be recognised around the world for its signature contributions, especially in global food security, energy & sustainability, and health.
More news from the University at: www.nottingham.ac.uk/news