FUNDRAISER Kate Francis started the challenge on Monday, the 21st of August, planning to cycle 30 miles each day for six days, with one rest day to raise vital funds for local hospice care.
Kate started the challenge in Gainsborough and will complete the trail in Louth, stopping at each of the 30 HeARTs that together form the St Barnabas Hospice HeART Trail.
After spotting the ‘Seals of Approval’ heART sculpture whilst visiting her family in Sutton on Sea, Kate decided on impulse, at 11pm, to embark on a training programme to cycle the entire 160-mile route to raise money for St Barnabas Hospice.
Although Kate claims not to have previously done this kind of challenge, she loves any outdoor pursuits
“I love being outdoors, so any activities that involve being outside bring me joy and are great for my mental health. Exercise isn’t
“I wasn’t a cyclist before I started training for this challenge. I had an old bike that I used very occasionally. But now I love how cycling makes me feel free. It has shown me how much I am capable of.”
With the help of supportive friends and family, Kate has borrowed a touring bike and has organised to stay at campsites around the county for free or at a reduced rate, as the stay is for charity. St Barnabas Hospice Fundraiser Chris has also been on hand to help.
“I want to thank Chris, who has supported me with great communication, helping me if I needed it with planning and with the branded kit to advertise my training and cycle challenge. He’s also joining me on leg one of the cycle from Gainsborough to Lincoln!”
Kate’s cycling itinerary is as follows: Gainsborough, Lincoln, Grantham, Spalding, Boston, Skegness, Chapel St Leonards, Sutton on Sea, Mablethorpe and finishing at Louth.
Having already hit her target to raise £500, Kate hopes to raise more as the week’s hard work continues.
“St Barnabas came into our family’s life at the beginning of this year when we needed support for a very close family member. They are supporting my family members with weekly visits from nurses. They have provided much-needed help and support, including clinician visits and occupational therapy.
“They have helped with prescriptions, appointments and equipment. We wouldn’t be in such a supportive and good position without them. They have helped make a horrid situation feel supported. We are so grateful to help for their continuing support.”
St Barnabas Hospice relies on fundraising activities and donations to continue providing care to those living with life-limiting or terminal illnesses. Their care also extends to patients’ loved ones and families.
If you would like to show your support to Kate, you can find her on Instagram @kate-cycles-heart-trail or by donating via her JustGiving page.