Two cycling enthusiasts from Bristol Specsavers have completed a gruelling 430km bike ride from Bristol to Paris in aid of local charity Above & Beyond.

The store has been supporting the charity for several years and helped raise more than £25,000 for the nine city centre hospitals which it supports. Continuing the store’s ongoing support, store director, Mark Walker, and store manager, Kevin Coles, set off from the Clifton Suspension Bridge on 1 May as they embarked upon their four-day challenge.

‘Cycling from Bristol to Paris was an incredible experience and something we’d certainly do again,’ said Mark. ‘Kevin and I were part of a 70-strong team all raising money for Above & Beyond, and the team spirit certainly inspired us to keep going.’

The team travelled more than 160km to Plymouth during their first two days before crossing the channel to Caen to complete their journey to Paris, taking in beautiful views of rolling countryside along the way.

‘We were lucky to have good weather for the entire trip and now we’ve both developed the cycling bug, we’re planning to get back on our bikes very soon,’ Mark added.

Above & Beyond helps more than 500,000 patients cared for in Bristol's nine city centre hospitals each year, as well as the millions of friends and family who visit them, and the 8,000 dedicated NHS staff who care for them. 

Mark and Kevin now plan to take part in Bristol’s Biggest Bike Ride on Sunday 22 June.

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