Norwich friends get on their bikes to help raise money for local charities

Julian Clarke (left) and Tom Butler get on their bikes for charity. Picture: SUBMITTED.

Julian Clarke (left) and Tom Butler get on their bikes for charity. Picture: SUBMITTED. - Credit: Archant

Local charities are set to benefit from a 1,007-mile cycle ride after two friends spent the last year training to journey from Lands' End to John O'Groats.

Tom Butler, 43, and Julian Long, 49, will start their unsupported cycle ride in aid of their two chosen charities on July 1.

They will be cycling across the country, averaging 80 miles a day.

The 13-day trip will take them across the steep contours of Cornwall and south Devon, over the Mendips and into South Wales. From there they will head north along the Welsh border towards Lancashire and the edge of the Lake District. Then Scotland, where the cyclists will head over to Ardrossan, cross to the Isle of Arran, and cycle north along the shores of Loch Fyne. They will then tackle the Great Glen from Fort William to Inverness, before traversing the Highlands up to the north coast and turning east to finish at John O'Groats on July 11.

The two friends have been in training for a year, as well as cycling in other events. This will see the duo completing 2,014 miles in 2014.

Mr Butler is a consultant ophthalmic surgeon at the James Padgent Hospital and the Norfolk and Norwich Hospital.

His chosen charity is the Norfolk and Norwich Association for the Blind. The money raised will go towards supporting more than 20,000 people who suffer from sight loss.

Most Read

Mr Long is raising money for the Ringsfield Hall Trust. The charity supports the physical, emotional and spiritual development of children and young people.

The cyclists will face a variety of weather, as well as trying to remain safe on their journey.

Mr Butler said: 'The main is thing is trying to avoid injury.'

Both of the men have received 'overwhelming' support from their families, colleagues and friends.

• To donate to their chosen charities visit

• Are you doing something to raise money for charity? Email