Brain tumour tragedy inspires 1000-mile cycle from Land’s End to John O’Groats

June 24, 2019

A Driffield man is preparing to cycle the length of Britain, to raise money for the charity Brain Tumour Research, in memory of a friend who died from the devastating disease.

Keen cyclist Edwin Maund, 52, will set out from mainland Britain’s most south-westerly point on 22 July 2019, travelling 1,000 miles and climbing 17,500m over the course of 12 days. He is aiming to cycle around 85 miles a day, in order to reach the most northerly point on the island of Britain in less than two weeks.

Edwin’s Land’s End to John O’Groats challenge is inspired by former colleague and close friend Jonathan Middleton, from Cherry Burton, near Beverley. Jonathan and Edwin worked together for 15 years in the planning department at East Riding of Yorkshire Council. Edwin now works as an examining inspector at the Planning Inspectorate.

The East Riding Tuesday Casuals cycling group member, said: “Jonathan was such a lovely guy and really good company; you could talk to him about anything. We shared many passions; vintage cars, hill walking and cycling. When he passed away it was an opportunity to do something positive in his memory.”

Father-of-two Jonathan retired from his job as a development management team leader in May 2017, only to be diagnosed with an incurable brain tumour the following October. He died in May 2018.

Edwin said: “He lost his battle at the age of 63, less than a year after his diagnosis. His fight against this horrible disease was brave, polite, but ultimately unsuccessful. He was always so calm and quiet, a deep thinker and a true professional. He is missed by so many people.”

Edwin has taken part in cyclosportives in the UK, Germany and Belgium and has twice completed the coast to coast. But the Land’s End to John O’Groats fundraiser is set to be his biggest challenge to date. The route will pass through Taunton, Bridgnorth, Glasgow and Inverness, arriving at John O’Groats on 3 August.

He said: “My wife cycled the route last year but I’ve never tackled anything on this scale before. My training is ramping up now with twice weekly gym sessions and two long rides at the weekend, as well as shorter rides during the week. It’s not the distance that I’m worried about but the hill climbing, that’s what saps the energy. A significant number of people drop out but I’m determined not be one of them!”

Edwin will be joined on the ride by his 25-year-old son Chris Maund, a soldier with the Royal Electrical Mechanical Engineers, based in Wiltshire. They’ll be supported along the route by Jonathan’s family; his wife Jill and their two children Ed and Anna.

Edwin is asking for donations to Brain Tumour Research, which funds sustainable research to find a cure for brain tumours at dedicated Centres of Excellence in the UK. The charity also campaigns for the Government and the larger cancer charities to invest more in research into brain tumours in order to speed up new treatments for patients and, ultimately, to find a cure. The charity is calling for an annual spend of £35m in order to improve survival rates and patient outcomes in line with other cancers such as breast cancer and leukaemia.

Matthew Price, community fundraising manager for Brain Tumour Research in the North East region, said: “Brain tumours are indiscriminate; they can affect anyone at any age. What’s more, they kill more children and adults under the age of 40 than any other cancer, yet historically just 1% of the national spend on cancer research has been allocated to this devastating disease. We thank Edwin for setting out to raise a fantastic amount of money, as well as helping to raise awareness of this awful disease. We wish him and Chris every success for the ride.”

To donate through Edwin’s page, go to www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Edwin-Maund2

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