Cycling challenge

A team of determined were able to start their training for a charity event after they received a generous donation of three indoor bikes.

The Brandon Youth Project has high hopes of tackling the coast to coast route and, to increase their pedal power, they have just received three 'spinning' cycles from the City of Durham Leisure Centres.

More than 30 young people from the project, based in St Andrew's Church, Brandon, and the Durham Disability Cycle Group, are hoping to take part in the fundraiser later this m month and will be using the bikes as part of their training programme.

As well as donating the bikes, the city's Leisure Services team is also working to support the group in their preparation. Leisure assistants from Meadowfield Leisure Centre are working with the group to help develop their training by running different fitness activities including circuit training sessions.

Normally, the coast to coast route can be completed by adults over two days but with many of the cyclists being younger and some having a disability the group will be completing the route over four days.

They'll be travelling to Whitehaven to start the ride, hopefully finishing in Sunderland. The young cyclists will be raising money for the Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY) charity.

The young cyclists will be joined on the route by Lynn Readman, a youth worker for the project. She said: "The ride will be a real challenge for all of us taking part but we're hoping to be well prepared thanks to the spinning bikes we've received.

"Being able to train indoors as part of our weekly sessions has been great especially with the recent weather. Everyone taking part is really looking forward to putting the training into action."

Councillor Sue Pitts, portfolio holder for leisure and culture said: "We are delighted to have been able to support the youth group with the donation of this equipment.

"Part of the work of the Leisure Services team is to encourage and increase physical activity out in communities and this project is a great success story with so many young people having the opportunity to get involved in sporting activity through the weekly training sessions and then the route itself. I wish everyone taking part in the cycle the best of luck."