Cityworks Riders were formed in June 1997 by two friends Les Routledge and Paul Riding after the deaths of another friend Stewart Stoneham aged 32 and Lesís father in law Donald Patterson to Leukaemia.
Paul suggested to Les to buy a bike to get fit, (as both of them needed to) and six weeks later the first of many charity coast to coast cycle rides took place.
It was their intention to do a cycle ride to raise funds for the Bone Marrow Research Fund at the R.V.I. Newcastle. This was a thank you to professor Steven Proctor and his staff for their hard work in treating Patients going through this awful disease.
So the date was set for the first ride, it was in August from Whitehaven to Tynemouth via Sustrans sea to sea route. (C2C) 149 miles, three days, with all our worldly goods carried on panniers.
1997 Coast to Coast number 1.
Three cyclists took part, 14 year old Gareth Welsh making up the numbers with Les and Paul. The route took them from the seaside town of Whitehaven via Keswick, Penrith, Alston, Consett and Tynemouth.
This is the route that most cyclists do as their first C2C, so it was as good as any to start with. (This route is classed as moderate).
£1400 was raised for The Bone Marrow 2000 Appeal.
The ride was quite a challenge for the 3 novice cyclists but the weather was kind and Cityworks Riders were born.
Over the next six months or so we talked to many of our work colleagues about our experiences during the ride and it was decided to organise another C2C with more riders and to raise more funds for other charities.
Click here to find out about all of our previous Charity Rides.