Ride bikes. Eat cakes. Have fun. On Sunday 17th September.
Ludlow Cycling Festival 2017 is a fantastic day out for the whole family raising money to help Shropshire cancer patients and their families through Macmillan Cancer Support.
It all takes place on Sunday 17th September at Ludlow Rugby Club and is now in its fourth year.
At 8.30am the serious riders start the South Shropshire Tors 60km or 106km sportive, heading west on quiet lanes to the hilly Welsh borders before finishing back to the Rugby Club. There is a leisurely 30km led Ride To The River for intermediate riders which will break in Leintwardine for a riverside picnic thanks to the Harley Estate. Our self-led 11km Family Ride supported by Islabikes, the children’s bike specialists, is aimed at young families and new riders and we will have a group start at 10.30am on quiet lanes through the Earl of Plymouth Estate. And our 18km Fantastic Forest MTB ride will explore the bridleways and fireroads of Mortimer Forest.
There are bike competitions and races, loads of activities to keep you busy, a BBQ and homemade cakes, a Mega Prize Raffle and much, much more throughout the day to make sure that everyone can get involved.
Cancer is the toughest fight most of us will ever face
If you or a loved one has been diagnosed, you need a team of people in your corner supporting you every step of the way. That’s who Macmillan are: – the nurses and therapists helping you through treatment; the experts on the end of the phone; the advisers telling you which benefits you’re entitled to; he volunteers giving you a hand with the everyday things; the campaigners improving cancer care; the community supporting you online, any time; the fundraisers who make it all possible.
How do Macmillan help?
One of our organisers Ashley was first diagnosed with a rare form of cancer in the roof of his mouth in 1991, at the age of 21, which was successfully treated. In early 2011 he noticed a swollen gland under his ear and went to his GP who later confirmed the cancer had returned. He underwent eight hours of surgery, which resulted in temporary paralysis of the right side of his face, followed by six weeks of radiotherapy at The Royal Marsden in London. Ashley believes Macmillan were essential to help him and wife Lara and son Rowan get through their difficult times: “Macmillan gave me a grant to help with travel costs when I was having my treatment over 150 miles away in London, helped us find our way through our financial worries, gave us psychological counselling to help deal with our fears of cancer and for the future, and organised rapid pain relief prescriptions from the local GP”.
Hear Ashley discuss feelings of isolation after being diagnosed with cancer for the second time. He also explains how his illness caused his relationship with wife, Lara, to suffer. They were put in touch with Marilyn, a Macmillan clinical psychologist, who helped them see a clear way forward.
‘I felt like I was sinking under the water, I felt like I was putting my hand up to Lara above the water but she was withdrawing her hand because she felt that if I got hold of her, I would drag her in, and we would both drown.’
‘Without Macmillan, it would have been too difficult emotionally. There would have been no money coming in, the stress would have been much higher – it would have been total chaos. I’ve been very lucky to benefit from their support.’
His wife Lara talks about how her husband Ashley’s diagnosis affected their relationship and family life. As the main breadwinner in the family, Lara felt overwhelmed and wasn’t sure if she’d be able to continue working.
She didn’t realise that as a carer, she needed just as much support coping with the emotional impact of her husband’s illness. Clinical Psychologist, Marilyn, was there to support Lara as an individual as well as to help the couple see a clear way forward together.