Charity cyclists ride through Northam

TWO English cyclists who set out from London's Trafalgar Square August last year to cycle 25,000 kilometres to Sydney rode through Northam on September 27.

Matt McDonald and Andy Madeley are raising money and awareness for War Child, an international charity which helps assist children in areas of conflict or post-conflict.

The charity provides food, clothing, access to education and healthcare and works on a national and international level to help change policies.

Currently 21,000 British pounds have been raised.

Mr McDonald said War Child was close to his heart and gave the journey added purpose.

“The first decision we made after agreeing to do the ride was to raise as much money and awareness as possible for War Child,” he said.

 “If we are ever having a bad day all we need to do is consider the lives of the kids we aim to help.

“It soon puts into context any challenges we may face.

“At any time we know we could get a flight home but these children have no such escape route and little hope their lives will ever improve.”

Since the beginning of their journey Andy and Matt have cycled through 20 countries, with Australia being the 21st.

Mr Madeley said the expedition has been an unforgettable experience.

“I will never forget the people we have met, the things we have seen and the countries and cultures we have experienced,” he said.

“However the kindness of strangers sticks with us most.

“In some countries people had almost nothing but they were happy to invite us into their homes for the night and share the food they had.”

Adelaide and Melbourne are the pair’s next pit stops, before finishing at their final destination of Sydney.

Matt McDonald and Andy Madeley outside the Avon Valley Advocate office.

Matt McDonald and Andy Madeley outside the Avon Valley Advocate office.