Former mayor clocks up miles on charity ride

PHOTO : DAVID HURST'Former Chorley Mayor, Alan Whittaker of Heskin, prepares to set off on a charity bike ride to chorley's twin town, the Hungarian town of Szekesfehervar.
PHOTO : DAVID HURST'Former Chorley Mayor, Alan Whittaker of Heskin, prepares to set off on a charity bike ride to chorley's twin town, the Hungarian town of Szekesfehervar.

A former Mayor has clocked up more than 900 miles of a charity bike ride to Chorley’s twin town in Hungary.

Alan Whittaker, 67, of Heskin, left at the start of May to begin the five-and-a-half-week trip through Germany, the Czech Republic and Slovakia before arriving at his final destination of Szekesfehervar.

He hopes to raise around £5,000, to be split between the Royal British Legion and local charity Help the Homeless.

He’s being accompanied through Germany to Prague by retired schoolteacher Martyn Fairclough, of Eccleston.

Alan emailed the Guardian to say: “It’s been a great adventure and unpredictable.

“The river (Elbe) changes so much. From ocean going container ships in Cuxhaven/Hamburg to deep gorges with pleasure craft in Saxony, Germany, to narrow stream with tidal ferry where we are now, just 30k from Prague People are so friendly and easy to talk to. They’re quick to smile and help when we get lost- as we often do.

“We’ve seen many memorials to German losses, Dutch losses and Czech losses. Now it seems so peaceful. God bless the peacemakers.”

Follow Alan at www.thebottomlineblog.tumblr.com