Community News From Around Our Area

Hospice Asks Cyclists to Get Pedalling for Vital Care 

‘Ride the Reservoir’ – the popular cycling challenge from Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice – has grown this year, with new routes added for beginner cyclists, families and pros.

Birmingham St Mary’s is calling on generous riders to take on Ride the Reservoir this March – a cycle sportive which aims to raise much-needed funds for its care.

Taking place on Sunday 15th March, biking enthusiasts can take on a 25km, 75km or 100km route as they ride through the West Midlands’ most scenic countryside.

For the past four years, Ride the Reservoir has been a 75km cycle which starts at Bartley Green and heads into the pretty villages of Belbroughton, Chaddesley Corbett, Dodford, and Barnt Green amongst others. Following positive feedback from participants, two new routes have been introduced so that beginners, families and more experienced cyclists can get involved.

Ride the Reservoir’s 25km route is aimed at new cyclists or families who are looking for their first pedalling challenge. Starting in Bartley Green, riders will be taken through Bournville, Cannon Hill Park and Woodgate Valley Country Park, before heading back to the reservoir. The route will follow cycle paths and canals, with just a small amount of cycling on the road required.

The 100km route is for more experienced riders who want to go the distance, taking them through Tutnall, Beoley and Alvechurch then returning via a demanding uphill section past the picturesque Lickey Hills.

A popular sportive, last year’s Ride the Reservoir saw more than 600 riders raise over £23,000 for the Hospice, making it a sell-out event. All participants are encouraged to fundraise for the charity and help provide care and support for local people who are living with life-limiting illness.

Laura Nash, events manager at Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice, said, “Ride the Reservoir is always a popular event and a fantastic way to kick start the cycling season. Over the years, many of our riders have told us that they’d like to see the route extended so that they can up their challenge, or that they’d like to see a more accessible route for their families – which is why we’ve introduced two new routes. We’re looking forward to seeing some familiar faces in March, along with welcoming new cyclists.”

Every day, Birmingham St Mary’s cares for and supports 500 people who are living with life-limiting illness across Birmingham and Sandwell. Its expert team of doctors, nurses, counsellors and more, help people to live well with illness, providing support in people’s homes, in the community and at the Hospice itself.

Laura added, “It will cost £9 million to run our vital services this year and this figure continues to rise as we see more people who need our vital care. That’s why sponsorship money from events like Ride the Reservoir is so crucial, as it enables the Hospice to continue to care for individuals and their loved ones when they need it most.”

Ride the Reservoir is approved by British Cycling – the national governing body for cycling in Great Britain – and is supported by local, independent bike shop, Red Kite Cycles. All cyclists who take part will receive free medical support if needed, post-cycle drinks and snacks, and a certificate and gift.

Registration costs £15 for adults and £10 for children for the 25km route, £22 for 75km and £27 for 100km. Cyclists can sign up at www.birminghamhospice.org.uk/ride-the-reservoir-2020.