A retirement pact made by two Ribble Valley friends has had them JOGLE-ing their way to raising almost £3,000 for Rosemere Cancer Foundation.
Dutton’s Brian O’Neill (61), who sold the Blackburn nursing and residential home he ran with wife Eileen to retire last year, and Mellor dentist Barry Nutter (64), who is planning to retire at Christmas, spent a month in the saddle cycling an average of 40 miles a day from John O’Groats to Land’s End – the more difficult JOGLE challenge as opposed to the LEJOG (Land’s End to John O’Groats) route, which is said to have preferential prevailing winds!
In total, they pedaled some 1,054 miles to help Rosemere Cancer Foundation as a thank you for treatment and care Barry received at Rosemere Cancer Centre in 2016 when he was diagnosed with prostate cancer.
Brian, who has two children and four grandchildren, said: “Barry and I have been friends for some 30 odd years and wanted to do something memorable to mark our retirements. I mentioned cycling from one end of the country to the other and it became a plan. The thing that will stick with us most is the kindness of those we met along the way at the various BandBs, pubs etc that we stopped off at, who would ask us about our challenge and invariably make a donation. En route, we each only had one fall off our bikes and took just two or three wrong turns. We faced sunshine and storms.
Brian added: “It was certainly an unforgettable experience but a very worthwhile one for the money we have been able to raise for Rosemere. Our original target was £1,000 so to have almost trebled this amount is quite overwhelming and we would like to thank everyone who has supported us.”
Eileen and Barry’s wife Frances, travelled to Glasgow to meet them and Frances also met Barry in Garstang to take him to a wedding in Windermere on their second day off! The duo also has special thanks for another friend, Grindleton’s John Eatough, himself a LEJOG veteran. John drove them up to John O’Groats and stayed with them as back-up for the first couple of days. He also drove to Land’s End to bring them home.