Intrepid Fife pair’s pedal power pulls in cash for CHAS

From left: Jamie Fraser and Neil Thain who completed a fundraising cycle to raise money for CHAS.
From left: Jamie Fraser and Neil Thain who completed a fundraising cycle to raise money for CHAS.

Two Fife men put the wheels in motion to complete a fundraising cycle from Land’s End to John O’Groats raising an incredible £1680 for a worthy cause.

Neil Thain (52) and Jamie Fraser (42) began the cycle, covering around 70-80 miles a day, on May 4 and finished on May 17.

Neil Thain and Jamie Fraser who completed their fundraising cycle on May 17. They are pictured at John O'Groats.

Neil Thain and Jamie Fraser who completed their fundraising cycle on May 17. They are pictured at John O'Groats.

They decided to raise money for charity at the same time and chose CHAS as the recipient after Neil heard about the work it does from his daughter Erin, who used to volunteer at the Kinross facility.

CHAS (Children’s Hospice Association Scotland) offers full family support for babies, children and young people with life-shortening conditions.

Neil revealed that before this fundraiser, neither he nor Jamie, who lives in Balmullo, had ever really cycled any distance before.

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Jamie Fraser pictured during the fundraising cycle.

Jamie Fraser pictured during the fundraising cycle.

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Neil, who is the owner of custom joinery firm Finesse Windows and Doors, based in Randolph Industrial Estate, Kirkcaldy, said: “My daughter gave me Mark Beaumont’s book The Man Who Cycled the World and that inspired me to do the cycle from Land’s End to John O’ Groats as he had done when he was younger. I just thought I would like to give it a go.

“But Jamie and I are not cyclists and hadn’t really been interested in cycling until we did this – I just started training in February going out on my bike doing ten miles to start with before building it up to 30, 35 and then 50 miles.

“Jamie works on the rigs so he was doing his training on a static bike. But he had it tougher than me because he did the challenge after coming off a three-week stint away, training in between 12-hour shifts.”

Neil said the trip required a lot of research.

“Jamie looked right into it so we could navigate our way through the cities,” he said.

“Each day we would get up at around 6-6.30am, get the kit ready, have breakfast and stock up on food. We mainly used cycle lanes where we could and that gave us more mileage. But some days we did not see any shops for miles so we had to be prepared and have some food with us.”

Neil continued: “My daughter said we should think about raising money for charity and she had told me about the work that CHAS does and I just thought it was a really worthy cause so we set up a Just Giving page just two days before we set off.”

He said there were many highlights with breathaking scenery in Cornwall, the Lake District and the Scottish Highlands. But while it was tough going, Neil said quitting was not an option: “There was no way we were giving up until it was done. We thought it would take 14 days and we did it in that time.”

Anyone who would like to make a donation can do so over the next week by visiting: www.justgiving.com/fundraising/neilandjamie