George and Aurelia Young joined hundreds of cyclists and walkers to 'Ride and Stride' to raise funds for the Hampshire & Isle of Wight Historic Churches Fund.
"Most cyclists managed to visit more than the four churches we visited, and it was great to see Joan, Lady Appleyard (Chairman of the Hampshire Historic Churches Trust) and Sarah Miller (Area Co-ordinator) at Appleshaw Church, to congratulate them on the hard work which they put in to organising this year's fundraising event. Lady Appleyard's husband, Sir Leonard Appleyard is Pro Chancellor of Bournemouth University, and a former British Ambassador to China".
George and Aurelia were greeted at Appleshaw Church with biscuits and fruit juice, and the local rector, the Rev Ian Tomlinson was there with his wife Caroline (Area Co-ordinator). Also helping out were Letitia Adams and Glen Miller, who was taking photographs for the records.
For the first time, churches in the New Forest were open for visiting, and the money goes to repairing and restoring churches and chapels in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight, with half the money being raised going to the church of the choice of the donor.
Caroline Tomlinson has kindly supplied the following information
26 people took part on behalf of Appleshaw. We received 74 visitors throughout the day - the majority on bicycles (4 walkers that I know of).
All the benefice churches were open and most had teams of people taking part. eg (for Thruxton) Christopher Rome cycled to 10 churches before lunch, and Steven (for Appleshaw) cycled to 26 churches and cycled 62 miles during the day. For Shipton Bellinger, Rev Stuart Kersley walked, with two parishioners Val and Rosemary, from Appleshaw back to Shipton; and so many more... As usual, young and old took part, and it was great fun! "What a lovely occasion" I heard at Appleshaw during the day - several times.
So far Appleshaw has raised £570 with more to come. However for the big fundraising we go to Hatherden and Tangley (again)! They raised almost £3000 last year and were top in the "top twenty fundraising churches".
Sue Armitage runs the day there. Her late husband Jeremy used to organise it and cycle too. He encouraged many of those still taking part. Graham Staples - a cyclist from H&T - created a justgiving page (we think the first for HIHCT Ride and Stride - certainly the most effective we are aware of) and has already raised £4450 this year! (He visited Appleshaw at 8.51am and says on his note showing he had visited: "Sorry to miss the refreshments.
Sarah Miller kindly supplied the following
Nearly 350 churches open for Ride & Stride in Hampshire & the Islands Region, including 25 in the Andover Deanery area. As a region we were aiming to raise more then the £42,000 achieved last year.
More than 70 visitors to St Peter in the Wood, Appleshaw, including two cyclists who were independently visiting in all 25 churches in the area, 100 mile round trip approx. One of them, Graham Staples
(Hatherden) has already raised £4,450 (this with the help of his employer Schroders matching every pound pledged to him). Graham was the impetus behind HIHCT using Just Giving for the first time this year.