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Highgate bowel cancer survivor helps raise £200,000 for charity by cycling nearly 900 miles

PUBLISHED: 11:58 09 July 2018

The Bums on Bikes team at John O'Groats with their backup team (From L to R), Tom Payne (backup team), Kyle Pepperman-Hackett (back-up team), Will Ridsdill Smith, Charles Mesquita, Doug Tannahill, Julian Prideaux, David Ellis (back-up team); Front, Steve Wright (back-up team), Paul Reynolds. Picture: Bowel and Cancer Research

The Bums on Bikes team at John O'Groats with their backup team (From L to R), Tom Payne (backup team), Kyle Pepperman-Hackett (back-up team), Will Ridsdill Smith, Charles Mesquita, Doug Tannahill, Julian Prideaux, David Ellis (back-up team); Front, Steve Wright (back-up team), Paul Reynolds. Picture: Bowel and Cancer Research

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A Highgate bowel cancer survivor pedalled his way to helping raise £200,000 for Bowel and Cancer Research.

The Bums on Bikes team at John O'Groats (From L to R), Will Ridsdill Smith, Charles Mesquita, Doug Tannahill, Julian Prideaux, Paul Reynolds. Picture: Bowel and Cancer ResearchThe Bums on Bikes team at John O'Groats (From L to R), Will Ridsdill Smith, Charles Mesquita, Doug Tannahill, Julian Prideaux, Paul Reynolds. Picture: Bowel and Cancer Research

Paul Reynolds, along with four other cancer survivors, cycled from Land’s End to John o’ Groats with Bums on Bikes. The 53-year-old beat the illness in 2009.

He said: “It was an absolute joy. Cornwall and Devon were really tough because you’re continually climbing.”

Disaster struck as the team entered Scotland when Paul hit a pothole and was catapulted over his handlebars, breaking two ribs and dislocating a finger. But incredibly he was soon back on the bike, via Dumfries A&E, to finish the 870-mile challenge.

Paul was amazed at the generosity of people they met on the way.

The Bums on Bikes team at John O'Groats with their backup team (From L to R), Tom Payne (backup team), Kyle Pepperman-Hackett (back-up team), Will Ridsdill Smith, Charles Mesquita, Doug Tannahill, Julian Prideaux, David Ellis (back-up team); Front, Steve Wright (back-up team), Paul Reynolds. Picture: Bowel and Cancer ResearchThe Bums on Bikes team at John O'Groats with their backup team (From L to R), Tom Payne (backup team), Kyle Pepperman-Hackett (back-up team), Will Ridsdill Smith, Charles Mesquita, Doug Tannahill, Julian Prideaux, David Ellis (back-up team); Front, Steve Wright (back-up team), Paul Reynolds. Picture: Bowel and Cancer Research

“We chatted to a lady in a car park whose cousin had just died of bowel cancer,” he said. “That afternoon she went online and donated £100. Everywhere we went, people thanked us for talking openly about a disease which is usually taboo. It was very moving.”

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