Mum would have been proud

Proud riders finish the challenge in Sunderland.
Proud riders finish the challenge in Sunderland.

A LOVING family pulled together to raise thousands of pounds in memory of a caring mum.

Nine dedicated fundraisers were so moved by the help a string of charities gave to cherished mum Val Glen that they put themselves through the pain barrier as they cycled almost 150 miles from Whitehaven to Sunderland.

The gruelling effort was organised as a tribute to Val, a former Hartlepool cleaner and dinner lady who sadly died on Christmas Eve last year, aged 55, after a battle with lung cancer.

The mum of twins, Wayne and Leon, 31, spent her life in Hartlepool and lived in the town’s Wyvern Court with husband of 35 years Wilf.

And her dedicated sons were joined by fellow family members and friends as they completed the marathon challenge and raised almost £5,000 for a number of charities close to their hearts.

Wayne and Leon, who both work in JD Sports, in Peterlee, took to the saddle with cousins Michael Murray, 23, and Samantha Murray, 27, along with five motivated pals.

After completing the challenge, the twins, who both still live in the town, told the Mail their loving mum would have been proud of their efforts.

“It was really hard work, probably harder than I imagined,” admitted Wayne, 31, who lives in Wyvern Court with his dad.

“But we were always aware of exactly what we were doing it for, to raise the money for the charities who helped my mum.

“The hills were absolutely gruesome, I had prepared well, but I didn’t expect them.

“But it was such a feeling to finish and know we had raised all that money.”

The efforts of the group raised a staggering £4,804 for good causes.

Hartlepool and District Hospice, who cared for Val throughout her illness received £2,200 and Macmillan Cancer Support who also provided their services received another £1,354.

Cancer Research UK were donated £670 to boost their coffers and Breast Cancer Care were given £580.

“We were hoping to raise a lot of money, but I don’t think any of us planned for that much,” said Leon, who lives in Caledonian Road with his wife, Shelley, 27.

“My mum knew we were planning to do this ride before she died last year and I know how proud she would be.

“That got us through the ride when it got really difficult, we thought of the charities we were fundraising for.

“We aren’t going to stop there, we are already planning to do the Hadrian’s Wall ride next year.”