Sunderland sergeant gets on his bike for charity

Sgt Ian Wilkinson

Sgt Ian Wilkinson

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A POLICE sergeant carried out a gruelling feat after being touched by the work of a children’s charity.

Sergeant Ian Wilkinson, who is based at Farringdon station, in Sunderland, battled against the elements to complete the Hadrian’s Wall route in less than 24 hours for children’s charity Over The Wall.

The 42-year-old, who teamed up with Detective Constable Adam Scott of Northumbria Police’s Crime Department, set off on the trek from Bowness to Tynemouth at 4am on Saturday.

The dynamic duo started off with a 15-mile bike ride, then a double marathon and finished with another 15-mile ride to raise funds for the charity that offers life-changing experiences to youngsters affected by serious illnesses.

Sgt Wilkinson said: “I’ve got four kids and I was touched when I saw this charity and these children who have illnesses and wanted to be able to do something.

“These children are full of life, but unfortunately they have serious illnesses and to be able to offer them a bit of hope and an amazing opportunity is great.”

Kevin Mathieson, Over the Wall boss, added: “The lads are doing a tremendously difficult challenge to enable more seriously-ill children in the North East attend a life-changing Over the Wall camp.

“I’m sure I speak for all the children and their families who will benefit from their efforts in thanking them for thinking of others less fortunate than themselves.

“It’s a wonderfully kind gesture.”

Sister Natalie Marshall, children and young people’s oncology outreach nurse specialist at Newcastle Upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, added: “Over The Wall camps are truly wonderful places.

“They provide an opportunity for seriously-ill children to reach beyond the limitations of their illness to find friendship and fun and simply be children in a special and safe environment.

“The difference these camps have made to many young lives in the North East and their families is truly amazing and there’s nothing else like it in the UK.”

Over The Wall provides life-changing experiences to those aged eight to 17 who are affected by serious and life limiting illnesses.

They offer free residential activity camps, as well as sibling and family camps.

For more information on the charity visit www.otw.org.uk.

Donations can be made to Ian and Adam at http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/AdamScott5

Twitter: @sunechochief