A SOLICITOR has completed a towering challenge to help improve the lives of disabled youngsters.
Cyclist Nick Marshall, peddled more than 1,600 miles across Europe, taking in some of the world’s most famous towers en-route, to raise funds for Pennywell-based charity Hope4Kidz.
Barbara Priestman School and Technology College, in Meadowside, Sunderland, will also benefit from the adventure.
The punishing 11-day trip started with Italy’s leaning tower of Pisa, taking the 32-year-old through the Alps, to the Eiffel Tower in Paris, across to London’s Tower Bridge and north to Blackpool Tower, before hanging up his bicycle clips at the Clock Tower, in Morecambe.
Nick, of Marshall Glover Solicitors, in Durham City, said Europe’s steep mountains, including the Alps, provided the toughest challenge.
“No matter how much training I did, nothing could have prepared me for what was in store,” he said. “I have never cycled in heat like it. Up in the mountains there was not a breath of wind.
“Then there was the continued 40-minute ascents and five-minute descents.
“Having said all that, the scenery was amazing and the adrenaline rush at hitting 50mph-plus on one descent was fantastic.”
Nick, from Lancaster, has so far raised more than £8,000 through the feat.
“I want to thank everyone who has supported us over the past few weeks,” he said. “And it’s not too late to donate on-line.”
Viv Watts, chief executive of Hope4Kidz, today paid tribute to the fundraiser.
“It was marvellous for him to do something like this, to go through the pain barriers.
“We all think he is absolutely amazing, braving terrible weather conditions and putting himself through all that cycling.
“After all, he is a solicitor, not a trained athlete.
“He normally works in what is considered a desk-based job.
“It was a tremendous achievement.”
Barbara Priestman School and Technology College is a school for students aged 11 to 19 with an autistic spectrum disorder (ASD) or complex learning difficulties.
It has 110 students, with 90 per cent of those diagnosed with an ASD. Money raised will be used to help develop its cycling programme and buy equipment such as helmets, cycles and a trailer.
It has an off-road site where its students can develop mountain bike skills and take part in school clubs, summer school, PE lessons and Duke of Edinburgh Award activities.
To make a donation to the Pisa the Action – Eiffel Cycle for Kidz Appeal visit www.blistersandbumache.com or www.justgiving.com/pisatheaction