A team of Royal Navy sailors from the survey ship HMS Scott left HM Naval Base, Devonport in Plymouth, departed Devonport yesterday (26 March) for a four-day cycle ride to Swansea in commemoration of a historical day and to raise money for St. Luke’s hospice.
The cycle ride is in commemoration of the 102nd anniversary of the last entry in the diary kept by Captain Robert Falcon Scott, the ship’s namesake, during his ill-fated Antarctic expedition.
Chief Petty Officer Dave Gregory (49) organised this cycle ride to both commemorate the historic day and raise money for St Luke’s Hospice in Plymouth. “We are raising money to purchase an industrial food processor for their kitchen,” said Dave whose team has raised over £200 already.
Cyclist Petty Officer Pete Howell, 37, said: “While St. Luke’s has a passion and dedication to offer dignity and choice; we share a passion for adventure and a dedication to a challenge. They provide a vital service and we want to spread recognition of what they achieve.”
The ride will cover a span of 252 miles and take four full days; a hazardous and physically demanding journey for the team of six sailors who are more accustomed to oars and anchors than pedals and tyres.
Pete said: “We started off cycling around as a group to get used to staying together and, more importantly, being safe. Once we knew we could operate as a team we started on distance and endurance to prepare both physically and mentally.”
The team will make stops in Taunton, Bristol and Cardiff Bay where they will be greeted by the Captain of The Scott Society before arriving at the Swansea National Waterfront Museum in the evening of March 29th.
“The first day is the biggest with over 80 miles to complete. After that, the other 170 miles should be ‘easy’,” Pete said with a smile.
Dave and Pete will be accompanied by Petty Officers Lee Burkin (40) and Sam Hadcroft (29), Leading Engineering Technician Richard David (42) and Engineering Technician Ben Rees (24). Petty Officer Jim Stevenson (51), will be escorting the team along the journey with the safety van.
Donations for the event can be made online by going to http://www.justgiving.com/Pete-Howell