Bikers hit the road to help seriously ill Sunderland boy

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BIKERS are swapping the pub for the road to raise money for a Sunderland youngster.

Gordon Littlewood, owner of The Mallard, Seaham, is planning a five-day sponsored motorbike ride across England with some of the pub’s regulars in a bid to raise £10,000 for Matthew’s Milestone.

Matthew Brettell on the motorcycle with Gordon Littlewood, landlord at The Mallard pub.

Matthew Brettell on the motorcycle with Gordon Littlewood, landlord at The Mallard pub.

The fundraising appeal, launched by Sunderland based charity, Hope4Kidz, was designed to support nine year-old Matthew Brettell, who has become virtually wheelchair bound since being diagnosed with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy two years ago.

Gordon and his fellow riders - Andrew Littlewood, Graham Parker, Darren Parker, Arran Gilbraith, Mark Vassey, Jeff Garrett, Ryan Anderson and Anthony Mongon - hope to set off on the 1,600-mile trip in September, with pub regulars, Malcolm Langley and David Wilson, accompanying them in a support van.

But, they first need to raise money for the trip.

Gordon said: “This money could change Matthew’s life, it’s an incredibly good cause and we’re all so determined to hit our target.

“Before we can leave though we need to raise £2,000 to help pay for the fuel, the bikes and the support van, so we really need people to get on board.”

Matthew’s family needs to raise £45,000 to top up a £30,000 government grant to pay for major building work to their Thornley Close home to accommodate Matthew’s needs.

Mum Maria, 35, said: “We couldn’t believe they would be willing to do this for us, we were stunned. I’m still a bit in shock, but it is fantastic.”

Gordon added: “If this gets off the ground then we hope to hold loads of fundraising events in the towns we pass on our way, so hopefully we will be able to get everyone involved there too.”

For information about the motorbike ride, to get involved, or for sponsorship opportunities, contact Gordon Littlewood on 581 2090.