Bury St Edmunds teen prepares for USA Coast-to-Coast ride in aid of children’s hospice

George Broughton
George Broughton

A teenager from Bury St Edmunds is preparing to take on a cycle ride of a life time as he kick starts his campaign to ride Coast-to-Coast in America.

Nineteen-year-old George Broughton, who is studying politics and philosophy at the University of Edinburgh, sets off for the USA on Saturday (June 18), where he will start his 4,250 mile ride from Seattle to Boston.

Coast2Coast route

Coast2Coast route

The ride will cover 13 states, one Canadian Province and take 64 days to complete.

George, of Church Road, Bury, will be raising valuable funds for East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices’ (EACH) nook appeal, a £10 million campaign to transform children’s palliative care across Norfolk which was launched in November 2014 by the charity’s Royal Patron HRH The Duchess of Cambridge and will include building a new hospice called the nook.

Last weekend, in preparation for his trip, George undertook a three day training session joined by his godmother Emma Deterding, an EACH patron who will be joining him for the final two stages of his Coast-to-Coast journey.

The pair cycled around all of the EACH hospices, travelling approximately 50 miles a day from Holt to Milton via Quidenham and Ipswich.

George said: “I am a very keen cyclist and am used to doing very long distances on a daily basis. When I was looking for a challenge I wanted more of a challenge than just Land’s End to John O’Groats – hence why I looked into cycling a route further afield. I finally settled on the Coast-to-Coast in America.

“My grandfather is Lord Fairhaven of Anglesey Abbey. He is the great grandson of Henry Rogers who helped build the town of Fairhaven in

Massachusetts, which is where the family title originates from. After the ride I will visit there for several days to look up my ancestry, which I’m really looking forward to and which my mother is organising for me.

“When I signed up to support EACH I didn’t realise Emma was a patron of the charity. I was looking for a local cause and when doing some research EACH came up. Visiting EACH’s Milton hospice and hearing first hand the work they do has made me even more determined to support the charity’s nook appeal.

“I am looking forward to starting my challenge and meeting the team I will be riding across the USA with. I know it will be tough, we cycle for six days straight, only taking one day off per week, but I am prepared and hope to raise as much money as I can for the children and families that EACH supports.”

Emma has been a staunch supporter of EACH for many years and in her role as patron works to promote the work of the charity and raise vital funds.

She said: “George is my godson and I am joining him for the last 1,000 miles (stages seven and eight) of his amazing challenge. I’m told that the first day is all uphill, so I’m very pleased I have started my training, albeit not many hills so far in Norfolk and Suffolk.

“I have been a patron for over 25 years and watched with interest the development of the Children’s Hospice Movement during this time and the merging of CHER (Children’s Hospice for Eastern Region) in 1998 to EACH. I am passionate about the work they do and the families they help.”

EACH has outgrown its current hospice in Quidenham, due to the changing and more complex needs of the children and young people it cares for and the increased demand for its services, and needs to move to a purpose-built site.

The nook will be built on a five-acre woodland site in Framingham Earl, just south of Norwich, and will offer services which are either currently unavailable or extremely limited at Quidenham hospice such as a hydrotherapy pool, music studio, large rooms for on-site family support groups, larger and more accessible outside space for children to explore and play and private rooms for one-to-one counselling.

The Coast-to-Coast ride is organised by Cycle America. George will be blogging throughout his challenge and plans to do regular updates on social media so people can track his progress.

To support him visit www.justgiving.com/fundraising/GeorgeBroughton

To support Emma go to www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Emma-Deterding