Lucy is back in the saddle

Have your say

A KIND-HEARTED youngster is climbing back into the saddle for a third time to raise cash for sick babies.

Lucy Barker, of East Boldon, is aiming to complete a 130-mile coast-to-coast cycle ride again to raise money for the maternity unit at South Tyneside District Hospital in South Shields.

When the 12-year-old sets off on Saturday, it will be the third time that the Whitburn CE Academy pupil has cycled the route from Whitehaven in Cumbria to Roker in Sunderland.

The hospital’s maternity unit is a cause close to Lucy’s heart as it was where her sister Isla was stillborn in 2009 after complications with her umbilical chord.

Mum Sarah, 40, married to Paul, 38, said: “The coast-to-coast ride is really tough, and some adult riders train for it for months, and sometimes have to get off and push their bikes.

“Lucy is very strong-willed and determined, and she doesn’t flinch going up the mountains.”

Lucy, who also has a nine-year-old brother Jack, did her first fundraising ride three years ago. Last year, she donated more than £500 to the maternity unit, and this year she has already managed to collect just under £300.

She said: “I love cycling, and I just want to raise more money to help the unit where me, my brother and my sister were born.”