Bike ride to help little Imogen from Lancaster

From left: Matthew Preston and Imogen's dad Andy Fairbairn who will be cycling from Lancaster to Cambridge to raise money for a specialist trike for Imogen.
From left: Matthew Preston and Imogen's dad Andy Fairbairn who will be cycling from Lancaster to Cambridge to raise money for a specialist trike for Imogen.
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Andy Fairbairn and Matt Preston are doing a sponsored bike ride from Lancaster to Cambridge to raise money to buy a specialist bike for Andy’s daughter Imogen who has spina bifida.

Imogen, five, from Lancaster, also has a number of other related medical issues.

Imogen Fairbairn.

Imogen Fairbairn.

This puts her in a wheelchair and therefore she misses out on things that other children can do, like riding a bike.

Imogen has a lot to deal with and not being able to walk and being in a wheelchair is a massive part of that.

She’s now halfway through reception class at school and doing great, better than anyone ever expected, but finding it really a bit upsetting not to be able to play with her friends. She was recently allowed to try out a specialist trike that is operated by her hands and it would be perfect for her.

But the tricycle needs to be specially adapted for each child and is expensive costing £2500.

If she could have one of her own it would really change her life for the best, especially at school.

Friend Matthew Preston and Imogen’s dad Andy Fairbairn hatched a plan to cycle from Lancaster to Cambridge where much of her family are and ask for donations to raise money for Imogen’s trike.

The cycle ride will start from Millennium Bridge, Lancaster, at 7am on Tuesday aiming to cover 100 miles to Stainforth, Doncaster, hopefully by teatime.

After a night’s rest, they will start off again at 7am on Wednesday to cover just short of another 100 miles to Oundle, Peterborough. Thursday will be a little more relaxed starting off at 9am after coffee at the café and then completing the final stretch into Cambridge.

Cambridge will be the place to meet up with Imogen’s extended family for celebrations of hopefully a successful ride.

Lots of effort has already gone into getting the bikes set up for the ride, planning the route, along with evening and weekend training sessions preparing for the distance to be covered.

Imogen’s dad has some experience of distance rides, but this will be the first time Matthew has experienced a ride of this magnitude.

They have set up a fundraising page GoFundMe.com/help-to-buy-a-bike-for-imogen which has already raised £135. Any donations would be gratefully received to help the duo reach their goal.