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Beijing Biddies Tuk Tuk Challenge team crosses the finish line

The Beijing Biddies team photographed with (L-R): Carol Milnes, University of Cumbria event manager; Liz Tinkler; Kate Sleath; Edwina Sorkin; Helen Stobart; and Gareth Presch, CEO of the World Health Innovation Summit and supporter of the Beijing Biddies.
The Beijing Biddies team photographed with (L-R): Carol Milnes, University of Cumbria event manager; Liz Tinkler; Kate Sleath; Edwina Sorkin; Helen Stobart; and Gareth Presch, CEO of the World Health Innovation Summit and supporter of the Beijing Biddies.

[T]he Beijing Biddies Tuk Tuk Challenge team crossed the finish line at the University of Cumbria today (Tuesday May 16) 14 days after setting off from Carlisle city centre.

The team, along with a group of six students who supported them, were welcomed back by the university, supporters and friends at the Brampton Road campus, marking the end of their 1100-mile journey around Britain to raise money for the fight against children’s cancers.

Edwina Sorkin, of Newbiggin-on-Lune, Kirkby Stephen; Kate Sleath, from Wetherby, in Yorkshire; Helen Stobart and Liz Tinkler, both from Penrith; were undertaking their third and final challenge to raise funds for Cancer Research UK and Macmillan Cancer Support.

While travelling around Britain in the motorised rickshaws, calling in to cancer research centres and units in Edinburgh, Newcastle, Harrogate, Cambridge, London, Merthyr Tydfil and Manchester, the team has had the backing of six second and third year Cumbria University students.

Jessica Bracken, a third-year event management student, has been responsible for creating posts on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Five second year students from the university’s wildlife media, adventure media and photography programmes, Alexander Fowkes, Amon Shaw, Dominic Daniel, Sam Burton and Emily Dodd, volunteered to take photographs, write a blog and keep a video diary of the challenge.

Team leader Edwina said: “This has been a huge team effort and we are delighted to have completed the challenge safely and in less time than we expected.

“Our motivation has always been to raise as much money as possible for our two cancer charities.  However we also wanted to raise awareness of this awful disease and we have certainly done that with this wacky challenge. We met so many people on the roads of Britain who came up to us with their own stories of their experiences of cancer, and to donate money to our cause.

“We are eternally grateful for all the support and kindness that we’ve encountered on our journey.”

It is almost three years to the day since Edwina and Kate, calling themselves the Beijing Biddies, drove from the UK to the Chinese capital in just 29 days for the two cancer charities. Last year they were joined by Helen and Liz plus Kerrie Ellison to drive from Carlisle to the Arctic Circle with no overnight stops, completing that challenge in four days.

So far they have raised £80,000 and aim to reach £100,000.

For more information, visit www.beijingbiddies.co.uk

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