Drenched cyclists brave torrential rain for mental health charity

Lynsey Woods with her friend Darren Morris
Lynsey Woods with her friend Darren Morris

A pair of drenched cyclists are braving today’s torrential rain in aid of a mental health charity.

Former County Armagh woman Lynsey Woods and her ex-colleague Darren Morris are cycling an epic journey from the Cotswolds in England to Portrush via Portadown in order to raise cash for MIND.

Lynsey Woods

Lynsey Woods

Both had been working for Carlsberg UK when they hatched a plot to cycle to Portrush followed by the Causeway Coast Marathon.

And so ‘Rush to Port’ was born and the pair have spent the last few days cycling to Northern Ireland.

However since crossing the border near Carlingford, the duo have suffered a massive soaking delaying their arrival in Portadown this evening.

The pair are stopping off in Portadown to stay over with Lynsey’s parents, retired primary school principals Joan and Dean Woods.

Lynsey Woods

Lynsey Woods

Indeed Joan and Dean are driving the support truck for the charity cycle.

Lynsey (34) who attended Lurgan Model, Hart Memorial and Hardy Memorial Primary Schools, Clounagh JHS and Portadown College, was keen to bring the charity cycle to Northern Ireland in what is turning into an extreme physical challenge.

Now married to Marcus Fleet and living in Berkhamsted on the outskirts of London, she is returning home on her own steam - literally.

Darren, originally from Yorkshire and now living in Bristol, is an experienced cyclist and has previously cycled to Paris and ran the Paris marathon.

To date they have raised a whopping £3,061.58 on their Just Giving page alone.

They plan to get up early tomorrow to cycle to Portrush, before sinking a quick cold pint of Carlsberg and taking a dip in the sea.

Afterwards they plan on taking part in the Causeway Coast Marathon.

Lynsey said: “It’s a huge challenge and we each have our battles to fight (Darren is carrying a few injuries...and I have been cycling since June!) - but we are determined to do it and raise as much money as we can along the way.”

“We wanted to support ‘Mind’ - as we believe mental health is largely misunderstood and there are so many people suffering in silence, or without the support they need - we want to play a small part in changing that.

“If you’ve ever felt anxious, lonely, depressed, stressed, worthless...or something much worse - then this money will go towards helping professionals help people get through the very hardest of emotions and the toughest moments of their lives.

“We are both firm advocates of keeping active and believe that, in some cases, this can help to keep the mind strong. So at the very least, we hope to inspire our friends, families and colleagues to keep moving and keep talking about how they are feeling!”

If you want to help donate, please go to www.justgiving.com/fundraising/darrenandlynsey?utm_id=26