Round the world tribute for pupils’ favourite teacher
A Golders Green teacher will be scattering the ashes of a colleague who died from a brain tumour on a round-the-world bike trip that his friend had intended to take.
Matt Andrews, 26, a biology teacher at King Alfred School, in North End Road, Golders Green, is taking part in the charity bike ride in memory of “everyone’s favourite teacher” Tony Young.
Mr Young, 41, had spoken about cycling back to his native New Zealand following the London 2012 Olympic Games.
Tragically, his dream never materialised as his life was cut short in June 2010, four months after he was diagnosed with a brain tumour.
“Tony always wanted to do something like this,” Mr Andrews, of Tufnell Park Road, Tufnell Park, said. “This seems like a fitting tribute.”
Along the way, Mr Andrews will scatter ashes at beauty spots. “Tony’s family have agreed that we should take some of Tony with us,” he said.
After finding out about his tumour, Mr Young continued working as an IT teacher at the school. He ran design and technology clubs including the popular Pimp My Ride club which refurbished old bikes.
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Mr Andrews said: “Tony had such a nice nature with the kids. He was quite a big brother character to them all. They loved him a lot. He was everyone’s favourite teacher at the school.”
He added: “He was amazing. He was still going into work while having treatment at hospital. He did not want to seem ill. He would get a taxi from school to University College London Hospital.”
Following his death the school held a memorial barbecue which Mr Andrews described as “very emotional”.
The round-the-world trip will take 14 months to complete and starts on September 2. Mr Andrews will be joined by friend Anthony King, 27, from Surbiton. They plan to cycle through Asia, America, Australia, New Zealand and Europe before returning to the UK in late 2013.
They will also be tweeting from their Twitter account @travellingyoung.
Money will be donated to charity, Brain Tumour UK, which supported Mr Young when he was ill.
n To donate, please visit www.justgiving.com/travellingyoung