Hundreds complete 60-mile Cuthy's Bike Ride in memory of Sunderland soldier who died for his country

Riding in to cheers from hundreds of supporters, more than 260 cyclists completed a fundraising challenge in memory of a teenager who lost his life while serving in Afghanistan.

By Poppy Kennedy
Sunday, 02 June, 2019, 17:16
Carla and Tom Cuthbertson

This year's annual Cuthy's Bike Ride, which is held in honour of Private Nathan Cuthbertson, saw the most ever cyclists complete the 60-mile journey from Caterick Garrison to Ashbrooke Sports Ground - in the quickest time yet.

Pte Cuthbertson was serving with the 2nd Battalion The Parachute Regiment (2 PARA) when he was killed while on foot patrol in Helmand Provice in June 2008. He was just 19-years-old.

Since his death, family and friends have dedicated their time and energy to remembering his name and honouring his legacy.

Last year's bike ride, which marked a decade of fundraising for Pte Cuthbertson's family, raised more than £18,000.

His mum and dad Carla and Tom Cuthbertson take part in the bike ride every year.

Carla said: "It's absolutely fabulous. Today we've had the most riders at over 260 and it's also the quickest time we've achieved so far too.

Carla and Tom finishing the bike ride

"We've had so much support, from the volunteers here and the people behind the scene to all the riders taking part and the people that sponsor them. It's just absolutely fantastic.

"The support that we get from the parachute regiment at Catterick Garrison as well is just phenomenal.

"We both work and this event is growing so big it's like a full time job, it takes a lot of planning.

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"Riding in with everyone cheering is really emotional. The support we get from every who comes along to the fun day is just outstanding.

Pte Nathan Cuthbertson was serving with the 2nd Battalion The Parachute Regiment (2 PARA)

"I was crying coming in. It's the first time I've seen the van with Nathan's pictures on and I just thought he must be so proud of us.

"Last year we raised £18,000 and we've got loads of sponsorship coming in. I'd encourage anyone who has sponsorship money to get it to us as soon as possible."

Tom added: "I just can't thank everyone enough for the support they've shown us over the years."

The ride raises funds for a number of good causes, including local cat and dog shelters, youth clubs, and the Not Forgotten Association, a charity supporting serving and ex-service men and women.

Bike riders at Ashbrooke
This year's event saw the most bike riders take part to date
Tom and Carla have thanked everyone who took part