Last month’s Tour des Silos charity cycle ride, the fifth organised by former Openfield manager Rob Sanderson, but the first under lockdown conditions, has helped achieve his long-term Motor Neurone Disease Association (MNDA) fundraising target.
“The UK coverage was from Aberdeenshire to Kent and Cornwall; Pembroke to East Anglia and all bits in between,” reports Mr Sanderson. “There were riders in seven countries outside of the UK in Australia, Belgium, Canada, Cyprus, Nepal, New Zealand and the US. So many people were posting pictures of grain silos on social media – I’m sure the MNDA timelines will never have seen anything like it.”
The initiative has raised £7,645 for MNDA from this year’s event before taking any gift aid into account. This exceeded the £100,000 overall CycleForKate target he set himself five years ago.
“As it turned out, being forced to adopt social distancing was a master stroke,” says Mr Sanderson. “With no geographical boundaries or time constraints, far more people could be involved this time – participant numbers tripled from the “real” events of previous years.
“I’d like to make a public thank you to all who have joined in, donated, helped and raised awareness of a disease that regrettably is not that rare, but through our actions is giving hope that one day a cure will be found.
“I’m really grateful and still somewhat stunned that my alcohol-fuelled brag of 5 years ago has come to fruition.”
Mr Sanderson intends to run a 2021 Tour Des Silos incorporating the best bits of both versions. Donations can still be made via Virgin Giving.