Richard cycles ‘Detour de France’ to catch a Euro football clash

Published on: 28 Mar 2016


AN EMERSONS Green man is taking on a gruelling cycling challenge after his mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease.
Richard Ford, 48, will be pedalling at least 500 miles in June in support of the charity Alzheimer’s Society.
Originally the footie fan was planning a much smaller ride in the UK - until he realised a detour via France would mean he could take in the England v Wales European Championship match.
“After originally considering a 200 mile ride called Chase The Sun, from the Isle of Sheppey across to Burnham on Sea, to be the main riding challenge for the year, it quickly escalated into something bigger,” Richard explained.
“I soon realised that the England v Wales European Championship match was being held in Lens, Northern France just a couple of days before and thought that could be an idea to extend the ride.”
Along with his ride partner, who is riding for a different charity, Richard will leave Bristol on June 14 and head to Folkestone to cross into France.
“On the day of the game we will ride down to Lens to be in and around the town whilst the game is on and soak up the match atmosphere,” he said.
“We will then make our way back to Folkestone and on to the Isle of Sheppey ready for the final leg on June 18. We have dubbed the ride ‘Detour de France’.”
Richard, a computer operator, said the cause is close to his heart after his mother’s diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease.
“I have previously done a number of rides for another charity including Land’s End to John o’Groats but following my mum being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s last year I wanted to see if I could raise some money for Alzheimer’s Society instead.
“As I now have a personal attachment to the cause and have first hand experience with the challenges that dementia brings, I wanted to do something for them to help with the  research and support for both sufferers and carers.”
To support the ride Richard is holding a quiz night at Pomphrey Hill Pavilion on Friday April 22.
So far the event has been well supported by local businesses donating raffle prizes but Richard is still looking for any form of help or for more raffle and auction items.
He would also like to secure a main sponsor for the ride itself.
If you are able to help, call Richard on 0796 9204457 or email him at
You can donate money in support of Richard’s chosen charity via

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