Harrogate Boy Wins Fundraising Award After Completing Great Yorkshire Bike Ride

An eight-year-old boy from Harrogate has been awarded for raising £1,272 for charity by completing the Great Yorkshire Bike Ride.

James Beagley, who attends Oatlands Junior School, was presented with the ‘Junior Sponsorship Award’ by the event organiser John Taylorson MBE at a presentation evening on Saturday (19 November 2016).

The Great Yorkshire Bike Ride, which takes place annually in June, involves cycling 70 miles from Wetherby to Filey. It was the first time James had taken part in an organised bike ride and the first time he had completed such a huge distance.

The ride attracts 2,000 entrants each year and has raised more than £2.7m for its recipient charities since it was first held in 1984. Participants in this year’s event have raised £111,068 so far.

James said:

I enjoyed the ride a lot. It was definitely a big challenge but a great event and it was nice to arrive at the seaside at the end.

James was inspired to enter the charity ride by his parents. His dad Robin, a keen cyclist, first took part in the Great Yorkshire Bike Ride in 1986, and has since been a regular participant.

One of the chosen charities for this year’s event was Yorkshire Cancer Research, a charity James’ mum Jo has worked with to raise awareness of ovarian cancer following her diagnosis two years ago.

James added:

My dad did the bike ride when he was aged 13 and I wanted to do it at a younger age than he did. Also the money raised went to good causes including Yorkshire Cancer Research.

I’m definitely riding it next year and would recommend it to anyone who wants a challenge. The food stops along the route are great.

Yorkshire Cancer Research will receive a donation of £11,000 from the money raised by participants, which will help to raise awareness of cancer and how to prevent it, promote screening programmes to increase early detection and fund innovative research projects, from diagnosis to end-of-life care.

Charles Rowett, Chief Executive Officer at Yorkshire Cancer Research, said:

We would like to say a massive congratulations to James and a huge thank you to John and everyone who helped to make this year’s Great Yorkshire Bike Ride a success. The money raised will fund patient-centred research and community health initiatives that will help more people in Yorkshire survive cancer.

For more information about the Great Yorkshire Bike Ride, please visit www.gybr.co.uk. To read Jo’s blog about her diagnosis with cancer, please visit www.ycr.org.uk/josblog