Bike ride in wife’s memory nears end

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After almost a year of cycling 100 miles a day, a Stapleford man is about to complete a 5,000 mile charity cycle challenge in spectacular style.

When Tony Smith’s wife Vivien died last year from secondary cancer, he vowed to raise £2,000 for Treetops Hospice as a thank you for the care it gave his family.

Tony, 68, will ride the last 40 miles of his challenge in the Tour de Treetops on Sunday, which also coincides with the end of Hospice Care week.

Tour de Treetops is a 20 or 40 mile sponsored cycle around east Derbyshire. Riders pass seven Treetops Hospice charity shops, as well as taking in a time trial lap of Donington Park. Both distances will start and finish at Treetops Hospice in Risley, where a Vintage Fayre will be taking place throughout the day.

Tony, who started the challenge on January 1, said: “Vivien’s wish was to be at home throughout the whole journey and with the help of doctors, district nurses and Treetops Hospice; we were able to carry out her wish. Treetops nurses were with Vivien and me throughout the final days and nights and were totally supportive and understanding of our needs. When the end came it was the most peaceful it could have been.”

He added: “I’ve got mixed feelings about it being over. Some of it’s been arduous because of the weather; some of it has been quite pleasant. I feel as though I’ve done something for Vivien and for a fantastic cause and I’m proud to have actually completed it.”