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Northamptonshire bikers’ support reaches £35,958

Northamptonshire bikers’ support reaches £35,958

There was an incredible sight on Sunday 07 January as 900 motorbike riders gathered in Northampton to take part in the 10th Chilly Willy charity ride out.

The annual Northamptonshire event raises money for The Air Ambulance Service – which operates the Warwickshire & Northamptonshire Air Ambulance (WNAA) and Derbyshire, Leicestershire & Rutland Air Ambulance (DLRAA)- and sees a convoy of motorbikers ride a route of around 20 miles.

This year, the event started from Northampton Active – a new location – after organisers decided they needed a bigger meeting point and saw the bikers head towards Bedford, through Olney, and back again, taking around an hour.

With the highest number of bikers to attend the event to date, the funds raised also exceeded expectations with £6,627 raised on the day, and further online donations boosting the total to a fantastic £8,200.10 raised for the lifesaving service.

Since the Chilly Willy ride out began a decade ago, the dedicated group of motorcyclists have now managed to raise an incredible £35,958.83 to support the charity’s vital missions across Northamptonshire and further afield.

“It was an amazing sight to see, so many bikers who, year on year, band together to raise vital funds for our charity,” expressed the charity’s Northamptonshire Community Fundraising Executive, Karen Hughes.

“We are astounded by the amount raised, not just this year, but over the 10 years this wonderful group of bikers have supported our charity. We receive no government or National Lottery funding, so would like to say a huge thank you to everyone involved in this event, from the organisers and participants to the volunteers and those who support the bikers on their route,” she added.

The charity relies solely on generous donations to fund its lifesaving service which provides pre-hospital critical care to those in their greatest moment of need, and with each mission costing £2,300, the Chilly Willy ride out has funded around 15 vital missions.

One of the Chilly Willy organisers, Paul Nicholls, added:

“We have been supporting The Air Ambulance Service for the last ten years to ensure they can continue to provide emergency critical care to those who need it most.

“Being a motorbike rider as well as enjoying outdoor activities such as golf, wild camping, and mountain biking, I know how important the charity’s crew are when we’re in remote locations. They can get to the location within minutes, flying at around 185mph and are able to give people the best chance of survival and recovery,” he added.