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Cycling in memory of Derbyshire great-grandmother to support local air ambulance

Cycling in memory of Derbyshire great-grandmother to support local air ambulance

An eleven-year-old boy is going the distance on a static bicycle for the air ambulance – in memory of his great-grandmother from Matlock.

Ben Hunter’s great-grandmother, Joyce Wilmot, sadly passed away on 19 April and because of Coronavirus and lockdown, he wasn’t able to attend her funeral – where she had wanted donations to be made to the Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Rutland Air Ambulance (DLRAA).

After being inspired by the great Captain Tom Moore and an article he read in ‘The Week Junior’ magazine about fundraising at home and in the garden during this difficult time, Ben decided to take on the great challenge to fulfil Joyce’s wishes.

He decided to put the static bike in the garden to use, and as this challenge was about his great-grandmother, he would ‘cycle’ from his home in Inverness to hers in Matlock – a total of 682km.

“I wanted to do this after I read the order of service from great-grandma’s funeral. I noticed that she wanted the donations to go to the Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Rutland Air Ambulance. I thought it was sad that there wouldn’t be much as hardly anyone was allowed to go due to Coronavirus. So I decided to do something about it to help,” says Ben.

“My mum and all my aunts and uncles were very sad that no one could go to see great-grandma before she died so I thought it would be nice to do something that would make people happy.

“I would be very pleased if people could donate even a small amount in her memory and to inspire me to cycle faster,” he adds.

Ben started his challenge this week, Monday 11 May, and has the ambition to complete all 682km within a month!

He calculated that on average he will need to push the pedals for at least 23km per day, but with his determination, Ben believes he can do it in less time as he has already completed over 70km.

DLRAA Legacies and In Memory Manager, Chloe Bass adds, “We want to say a huge thank you to Ben. Cycling 682km on an exercise bike is a fantastic achievement and I’m sure that his great-grandma would be very proud.

“We recognise that families can’t say goodbye to their loved ones in the usual way during this difficult time, and really appreciate all donations that we receive in memory of them.”

Ben has already raised over £300 and hopes to raise as much as possible for the lifesaving service, which relies on public donations, that his great- grandmother supported.

To support Ben on his mission, please visit his JustGiving page here

Your local air ambulance is helping to save more lives and its dedicated crews are continuing their lifesaving missions through this difficult Coronavirus pandemic – providing vital, critical care support to the NHS.

To find out more on how you can help support your local air ambulance, click here