Stag bikers aim to raise charity funds

Andrew Browning and fiancee Helen Provan.
Andrew Browning and fiancee Helen Provan.
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A NORTH east Fife man set to get married later this year is to embark on a ‘stag do’ with a difference in a bid to raise money for a charity helping premature babies.

Andy Browning, who is to marry Helen Provan from Cupar in September, will ride his motorbike from John O’Groats to Lands End, along with fellow members of the Flying Aardvark motorcyle club.

Explaining why he decided to cast the traditional idea of a ‘stag’ aside in favour of staging a charity fund-raiser, Andy said: “I decided to do a charity motorcycle ride to raise funds for ‘Bliss’, which is dedicated to improving both the survival rate and long-term quality of life of babies born too soon, too small or too sick.

“I put this idea to some like-minded persons in the same motorcycle club as myself and these simple ideas have now flourished into a John O’Groats to Lands End ride starting on August 6.”

Andy, who lives in Leuchars and became a self-employed electrician after serving in the RAF for 22 years, went on: “I am writing to a few local companies whom I hope share in our desire to support such a worthy cause and may be prepared to sponsor us in any way that they can.”

Andy explained that the Flying Aardvark motorcycle club was formed in 1992 in Germany at RAF Laarbruch by members of the British Forces and also had members from the local German and Dutch community.

He said: “In 1999, with the reduction of the British Forces on mainland Europe, the club split into three and the Flying Aardvarks Holland, Germany, and United Kingdom were born.

“The Flying Aardvarks in the UK are spread far and wide through out the lands and meet up on various events, both at home and abroad.

“The Flying Aardvarks Scotland continue to meet regularly for ride outs, raise money for local charities and attend many events throughout Scotland and Europe.”

Andy said that since some of his family are based in the south of England, he wanted to have a stag do they could join in.

“I plan to meet them at the motorcycle event, the Bulldog Bash, in August,” he said.

“With many of the Flying Aardvarks also wishing to join me this evolved into a ‘Top-to-Tail’-sponsored long way round ride to the event via John O’Groats and Lands End to raise money for Bliss (Scotland).

A former Bell Baxter High School pupil, Helen worked as a community vet before becoming a student at St Andrews University, where she is currently working on a PhD.

The couple’s wedding takes place in Kemback on September 24.

More details on the event can be found on the website, www.flyingaardvarksmcc.com and donations can be made on www.justgiving.com/toptotail.