Newsletter 13

The O2e year continues apace with more tales of heroic daring do from volunteers getting out of their comfort zones and in the process raising much needed funds to improve the lives of terminally ill and disabled children.

If you’re inspired by the following and want to get involved then give me a ring or drop me a line…..lots of summer highlights coming up…

Little Hadham hooters – COME ON DOWN!!!

It started out as all great challenges do over a few too many pints down the local.  A group of Hooters, led by charismatic chairman Grant Howard, decided it would be a really good idea to cycle 200 miles in a day.  As you do.  Word got round, Granty got round and before long there were 12 Hooters training for the challenge.  The weekend just gone saw the blurry-eyed hooters getting up at 2.30am to start their epic ride at 4am, just as the sun was coming up.  An 80-mile starter loop was completed in 6 hours, which was tremendous.  The team were joined for the second loop of 60 miles by a few nare-do-wells from O2e –Slatts, DD, Bazzer Brown and son Nathan.  We were supposed to carry them along but the Hooters were so strong, they didn’t need help, despite persistent headwinds.  Granty decided to take the scenic route through a ford at one stage and b*ggered up his front wheel.  Paddy was a great host, laying on a superb spread for food and drink stops between each loop and even stopping for regular puncture repairs so the boys could get their breath back.   The third loop (40 miles) was completed by 8.30pm and the last loop (20 miles) completed in the dark at 10.30pm, 18.5 hours after their early start.  Every one of the Hooters finished this formidable challenge and went on to sing and dance the remaining night away with the magnificent wives who provided food and drink for the weary tigers.  Kat and Kath from St Elizabeth’s Special School, just down the road, were there to cheer the boys on and remind us of their excellent work looking after profoundly disabled children, many with severe epilepsy.  
Fundraising from this event, the latest in a significant 2019 Hooters program, is already well over £1,400 and the Just Giving site will be open for a number of months, so please click here and donate before it slips your mind.   With thanks to all the Hooters – Granty, Paddy, Brian, Pearty, Smithy, Marky G, Charlie, Ed, Grimey, Charlie, to the lovely wives for their support (Gaynor, Tina, Gail, Veeney) to the kids for behaving so well and to the magnificent support crew of Marky senior, Gareth and Peter Wynne.  A fabulous event, coming on top of almost £10,000 raised by Granty et al., at the O2e darts night on 26 March.   Tremendous job! 

Dawn and Leanne smash their May challenge

Running, not cycling this time.  Dawn Aldridge and Leanne Bellingham absolutely smashed their respective targets for running in May – between them a total of 350 miles!  Well done ladies, a fantastic effort and a further £1,275 for the O2e total in 2019.  Superfab xx

Ollie does the O2e North Hants Golf Day

A superb day was had by almost 40 golfers for this annual thrash around North Hants Golf Club by Ollie and friends and colleagues.  Winner of the day was Mark Dewick from Katrin and of course O2e as well with over £1,400 raised on the day.  Great job Ollietastic and all the golfers.

Sign up for the Big Kev London to Paris ride

Deadline is END OF THIS WEEK to confirm hotel numbers for BKR during 12-15 September, less than 3 months away!  Please make sure you are signed up and paid by the end of Friday 21st June to guarantee your place on this brilliant annual ride.  Register by clicking here or cut and paste the following into your browser:
It would be great to have you along; the more the merrier  

Sponge (aka Kevin Smith) Camino trail epic ride

The latest instalment of Sponge’s 60th birthday celebrations and what a biggy….1000km of cycling along an ancient trail across the top of Northern Spain to Santiago de Campostela on the far North West tip. Sponge and David Caney were joined by O2e newbies Dick and Nigel Purland, but the boys were otherwise unsupported on this epic trail.  There were many trials and tribulations captured in a hilarious daily blog, but the boys made it home after 12 days of gruelling cycling in sweltering heat, torrential rain and severe headwinds (occasionally all three at the same time).  Fewer than 6% of the 47,000 peeps who completed this pilgrimage last year did do on bikes, so our boys really do deserve their Camino Certificates. 
As well as a few wrong turns, some spectacular tumbles and pretty impressive hill climbs, all went well until the police were called at Gatwick: apparently four dodgy looking blokes were pfaffing around, crossing back and forth at the departure gates with bloody great boxes which apparently is a “very serious offence”! Giggling at the young officers it seems does not help the situation….. four slapped wrists later, they were allowed to go home.

Almost £1,000 raised by David alone; let’s see if a few generous souls can get him over the £1,000 mark
Massive well done to Sponge and the rest of the team.

Siobhan Tea Party

Long time O2e supporter and all-round good egg Siobhan Carroll hosted her annual tea party on 2nd June in aid of O2e.  The weather stayed fine and lots of peeps ate lots and lots of cake apparently – with a total of £550 raised for O2e.  Brilliant job Siobhan!!  

DD and Bev’s Choppertastic

Yet more cycling, but this time with a difference.  The Leeds Liverpool canal was completed in 1777, making it very much older than the PBP audax.  At 127 miles it is somewhat shorter than the PBP audax, but just as gruelling.  Bev and Chairman Moi DD will be cycling the length during two days on 22 and 23 June riding Raleigh Choppers.Beloved of yuppy kids in the 70s and with a unique style and a bright, shiny exterior (but enough of Bev), we have been training hard for weeks for this one and clocked up a 30-mile ride a couple of weeks back.   It’s very different riding a Chopper; top speed is in the region of 8mph.  Downhill.  Can I shamelessly plug my JG site if you’ve still got a few sheckles down the back of that sofa:
With thanks for all donations so far you lovely peeps

Big Kev and Cazzer to ride Dieppe to Paris

Yes you heard that right peeps, near-death survivor Kev “Phoenix” Tuohy is going to be getting on a bike alongside cuz Caroline “Cazzer” Smith to ride 50km from Dieppe to Paris on the weekend of 28/29/30th June.  Training has been going well apparently; Caroline is up to 31 miles and Kev has achieved the same digits but in a different order. Only a week or so to go for these brave souls and in all seriousness a huge challenge for them both.  Sending them both a big O2e hug for best of luck and please pledge a few sovereigns to them by clicking here.   

Johny Milne, COME ON DOWN!

The Irish metronome continues his practice and qualification sessions for surely one of the most challenging challenges ever.  The PBP audax is 1,200km more or less none stop from Paris to Brest and back.  Johny has already completed two 400km training runs and a 600km qualification ride, which took him 37.5 hours and included an unintended detour of 40km just for good measure.  His rest was a 1hr kip in a bus shelter during heavy rain.   Johny can now relax and drink lots of Guinness in preparation for the main event, which starts on Sunday 18 August.  Anyone in Paris on 18th August can go along and give Johny a bag of jelly babies; he’ll need them! 
The PBP audax dates back to 1891 and is therefore almost as old as the bicycle itself.  It takes place every 4 years and has the largest entry of any other audax event.  And also the largest number of drop outs.  Don’t be blowing your nose on a downhill Johny (see what I did there?).  

BRC Hills Challenge 2019

Quick correction on the date of this cycling event – 7th July – not very far away!  This is a FANTASTIC event run by the wonderful peeps at Beckenham Rugby Cyclists and is deserving of a big shout out, with all monies raised going to O2e.  Wonderful event, different difficulty ratings, all comers welcome and a big BBQ at the end.  What’s not to like?  See details on poster below and get yourselves signed up.

Big Al – marathon number 6

Beardy Al completed his sixth marathon for O2e, this time it was Cheddar Gorge on 16th June.  Amazing stuff! More in next newsletter! 

Fin closes in on 100 x 100

Number 96 fun run completed… four to go

O2e web site

Rafe and the team have done a great job to get the website up and running after some reconfiguration.  Please check it out and recommend to family and friends at will.  More items will be posted in the coming weeks and months to keep our website vibrant and current.  If you see owt that needs adding or changing, then please contact techmeister Rafe on

A few words from one of our Charities…

And finally a note from one of our 2019 charities, St Christopher’s Special Residential School, who supported the Hooters on their 200m epic:
“I am totally in awe of your incredible efforts.  I can’t believe you are still cycling in the dark having started at 4am!  St Elizabeths is so grateful that O2e have chosen to support us – it means so much to us…. 
On behalf of everyone at St Elizabeth’s – children, adults, staff and families – thank you for your incredible generosity”

Katharine Collis, Head of fundraising, St Christopher’s Special School

All of our fabulous charities are keen for O2e peeps to visit their facilities and see what O2e money will enable them to do for terminally ill and disabled children. We will be scheduling visits later in the year for O2e peeps to see the excellent work they do first hand.

Kat (centre) and colleague Kath (right) of St Christopher’s cheering Granty and the Hooters off on loop 2 of their 200m ride

Lots of love
Chairman DD Big Cheese xx


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