Cycling from Severn Bridge to Sutton Bridge for Riley
A courageous boy’s battle for health following surgery to remove a cancerous brain tumour has inspired nine men to take on a 200-mile sponsored cycle ride.
Connor Leighton and eight pals aim to pedal from the Severn Bridge to Sutton Bridge within a day on September 15.
They want to raise enough money to send Sutton Bridge lad Riley Watts (10) on a dream holiday with his family.
Riley has been in and out of hospital over the last year due to chemotherapy treatment and a series of infections that have laid him low.
Connor said: “All the family wish for is to go on a holiday somewhere to have some normality so we are wanting to raise some money for them and the rest will be going to Cancer Research UK.”
The pedalling pals know Riley’s dad, Shane (42), through their links with football.
Forklift driver Shane has had a year’s sabbatical from work to help the family cope with Riley’s illness.
“He’s on his seventh batch of chemotherapy,” said Shane. “He’s got one more to go.”
Shane said the tumour has gone, as far as the family know, but Riley will have to undergo more scans.
He said Riley becomes distraught if he has something like a ten-day stay in hospital, and just wants to be home with his brothers, Brandon (11), Owen, who turns seven this week, and sister Jessica (20).
Shane said for Riley and the family a holiday would “mean the world to get away, forget about what’s happened and just enjoy themselves”.
Last year, when Riley had surgery at Addenbrooke’s, his mum Emma Kelly and dad took turns to be by his bedside while making life as normal as possible for their other children.
The cyclists are appealing for businesses to help by donating cycle spares such as inner tubes and things like cycle jerseys, perhaps advertising the name of the donor business.
Connor said: “Also we are struggling to get everybody down to the hotel the day before so if a local taxi firm could help that would massively help.”
Joining Connor on the ride will be Liam Burton, Adam Fitch, James Barnes, Ivan Ingham, Keenan Hall, Matt Hall, Adan Thompson and Daniel Whitrid.
• Businesses offering sponsorship can call Connor on 07808 667338.
To donate please visit www.gofundme.com/ride-for-Riley