Saturday, 27 November 2010

Santiago or Bust!

They did it!...

Patricia and Richard Plested, two of our younger choir members, cycled from Canterbury Cathedral on Sunday July 25th and arrived in Santiago de Compostela 28 days later, cycling just under 1200 miles.

This was a sponsored cycle ride to raise funds for Diabetes UK and for St Mary and St Eanswythe's church Fabric Fund (which has to find a considerable amount of money for urgent repairs to roofing, stonework and murals).

And here is a picture of them holding their bikes aloft in front of the Cathedral in Santiago. The last day was particularly tough - 45 miles, hilly, temperatures up to 45°C and hence using up their 2+ litres of water that they each carried.It was still 41 at 5 p.m. in front of the Cathedral and even in the shade the paving stones were hot to touch, but were good to lie on after all their work.

For Patricia and Richard, apart from the actual cycling, they needed to collect stamps in their Pilgrims Passport as proof of their journey to Santiago. The passports are checked in the Santiago pilgrims' office and they then received their Compostela, a certificate in Latin.

Bust ?  
7 punctures, 2 inner tubes, 2 bike stands, 2 Speedos (wireless ones are entertaining, get too near a neon sign and they tell you that you are doing 60 mph!), 1 tyre, a few gear teeth, one Richard (his front wheel locked, catapulting him off the bike and into gravel - it took Patricia half an hour to remove all the stones from his hands and knee) and one caravan.

 I rounded a hairpin bend near Burgos, heard a bang, looked in the mirror and saw the caravan veer off to the left - I then learnt that the bit that connects to the van is only held on by two bolts, one had disappeared and the other snapped. Fortunately nobody was hurt and nothing damaged.

If anyone still wishes to contribute, sponsorship forms are available in St Mary and St Eanswythe's church or by donating on