Dad’s cross-country charity bike ride

A DETERMINED dad is making his way across the country on an epic bike ride for a life-saving charity.

Hartlepool man Tony Brown is among 13 workers who are taking part in a 180-mile bike ride from Morecambe, in Lancashire, to Middlesbrough.

The 53-year-old, from Kestrel Close, in Bishop Cuthbert, set off yesterday for the four-day trek, in aid of the Great North Air Ambulance.

Tony, who is married to Julie, a 50-year-old housewife, is a chartered surveyor and regional director with the Faithful and Gould construction and engineering consultants.

He is taking part in the mammoth feat in conjunction with Northern Gas Works, which Tony is a contractor for, and the end point will be the gas firm’s base at Cannon Park, in Middlesbrough, on Monday.

Tony, who is dad to 26-year-old Charlotte, took part in a coast and castles bike ride from Edinburgh to Sunderland for Help for Heroes last year, which raised £5,000, and also did a coast-to-coast ride for Cancer Research UK the year before.

Before setting off on his journey, he told the Mail he was looking forward to the ride, but it was with “some intrepidation”.

He added that the cyclists’ route would take them from Morecambe to Lancaster, then to Malham in the Yorkshire Dales.

The group will also ride to York, then Easingwold, up to Kilburn and through the North Yorkshire Moors back to Middlesbrough.

Wife Julie said: “Tony has been training a lot.

“When he is based at the Middlesbrough office, he will cycle to Sunderland.

“It makes it even more amazing because he hadn’t really started taking up cycling until about a year before the first charity event.

“We are so proud of him and it’s for such a worthy cause.”

Anyone wishing to sponsor Tony can do so by visiting www.justgiving.com/2011-ngn-cycle-challenge