Two local doctors are set to embark on a gruelling 5500km cycling trek in a bid to raise £20,000 for charity.
Retired Beaumaris GP Dr Steve MacVicar and Dr Andy Fowell, retired Consultant in Palliative Medicine, will begin their eight-week Asia to Anglesey cycling challenge on 28 March before returning to Holyhead on the 23 May.
They will start their journey from Istanbul and travel across a large part of the Eurovelo Cycle Route 13 along the old Iron Curtain Cycle Trail, which crosses 16 countries in a bid to raise funds towards St David’s Anglesey Hospice and the Motor Neurone Disease Association.
Dr MacVicar, who recently retired after over 30 years working as a GP on Anglesey, said: “I’ve always been intrigued by European cycle routes, but I have never had the time to do any of them.
“Now I have retired it has become more doable so when we began discussing this trip we thought why not do it for charity!
“We immediately thought it would be a great idea to raise funds for the new hospice planned for Penrhos Stanley Hospital and the Motor Neurone Disease Association.
“Having a hospice on the island will be of such great benefit to those families who need it as it’s currently a long way to travel to Llandudno from the north of Anglesey – having that care closer to home can only be a good thing.”
Dr Fowell, who worked as a Consultant in Ysbyty Gwynedd and Llandudno Hospital for over 20 years, was responsible for establishing the first Motor Neurone Disease (MND) clinics at Hafan Menai situated in the grounds of Ysbyty Gwynedd.
He said: “This is a great opportunity for me to give back to the MND Association – they were instrumental in setting up the clinics in Hafan Menai which have ensured that cases were followed up and people living with the disease were receiving the right support.
“The MND Association is the only national charity that supports and ensures money goes towards research into the disease. The money raised will help continue this research into the cause and treatment of MND.”
The pair recently visited Ysbyty Gwynedd’s Postgraduate Centre where they gave a presentation and talk on their upcoming challenge to a number of medics and health professionals.
Jean Williams, Postgraduate Medical Education Manager at Ysbyty Gwynedd, said: “It was a real privilege to welcome Dr Steve MacVicar and Dr Andy Fowell to our Grand Round at Ysbyty Gwynedd last Friday to showcase their ‘Asia to Anglesey’ Charity Bike Ride.
“Around £45 was raised on the day towards the challenge with many more delegates pledging contributions on-line for these worthy causes. We wish them every success in their endeavours.”
The pair will also be joined by their friend, Roger Thomas, former CEO of the Countryside Council for Wales, for the challenge which will see them cycling around 65 miles a day.
Dr MacVicar added: “We are really looking forward to taking part in this challenge, where we stop and where we stay is not planned so it will be a real adventure!
“We will be posting updates of our journey on Facebook for those who wish to track our route and see how we’re getting on!”
To show your support you can follow their journey via their Facebook page ‘AsiaToAnglesey’ and make a donation by visiting https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/Team/AsiatoAngleseybybike
Dr Steve MacVicar with Postgraduate Centre Manager at Ysbyty Gwynedd, Jean Williams and Dr Andy Fowell.