A team of 30 cyclists from Menzies Distribution will complete a 1,500km charity bike ride along the east coast of the UK to raise money for the newspaper industry’s charity, NewstrAid.
The team, which includes Managing Director David McIntosh, will take it in turns to tackle different stages of the journey from John O’Groats in Scotland to Mile End in Portsmouth over 10 days, starting on Friday 24th August.
The challenge, which will see the cyclists visit several Menzies Distribution depots along the way, has already raised more than £11,000 for NewstrAid, a benevolent fund set up in 1839 to provide help for people in need from the retailing, wholesaling, distribution and circulation of newspapers and magazines.
As the charity was founded by Charles Dickens, and 2012 marks 200 years since his birth, each stage of the journey has been named after his work starting with the Lazy Tour of the Two Idle Apprentices. The ride ends in Portsmouth – the author’s birthplace.
And the team has got extra inspiration from knowing that Charles Dickens was once a client of John Menzies.
Menzies Distribution Managing Director David McIntosh said: "We have a framed banker’s draft from 1869 which was made out by our parent company John Menzies to Charles Dickens for his books and which was signed by the man himself.
"When we finish our bike ride, we will be giving our own cheque to NewstrAid. It is a charity close to all our hearts at Menzies Distribution and we are very pleased to do our bit to help.
"We’ve never done anything on this scale before and we are delighted with the support we have had so far. Within the first few weeks of setting up the team, our suppliers, partners and publishers donated £6,000 to the cause which is fantastic, and we’re now up to £11,000. We hope to keep that momentum going and raise much more along the way."
He added: "Our business motto is ‘going the extra mile’ so this challenge is very fitting.
"I’d like to thank all those colleagues who are cycling and everyone across the business who has been supporting the challenge. It’s a real team effort."
To support Menzies Distribution and NewstrAid, visit the online donation page.