Bankers on their bikes for the 2016 Virgin Money Cyclone

Two teams of colleagues from Virgin Money’s offices in Gosforth will take part in the Virgin Money Challenge rides on Saturday 18 June, as part of this year’s Cyclone Festival of Cycling. The teams will ride to raise funds and awareness for the company’s corporate charity of the year, Heads Together, and the North of England Children’s Cancer Research (NECCR).

Heads Together is a mental health campaign led by The Royal Foundation. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry are spearheading the Heads Together campaign to end stigma around mental health. It aims to change the national conversation on mental health and wellbeing, and will be a partnership with inspiring charities with decades of experience in tackling stigma, raising awareness, and providing vital help for people with mental health challenges.

NECCR is a North East based children’s charity formed in 1979 by a small group of parents whose lives had been changed forever by childhood cancer. Some parents had lost children, while others were grateful that their children had overcome the disease and wanted to help others going through similar situations.

The cyclists from the bank’s operational headquarters in Gosforth have been training hard in the gym over the winter in preparation for the North East’s biggest cycling festival. They will be supported on the day by friends and family as the members of the two teams take on one of the 34, 64, 90 or 106 mile Virgin Money Challenge rides. Frazer Suddick, Senior Planning Analyst at Virgin Money, and riding for Heads Together said:

It’s just brilliant to be part of this fundraising team for Heads Together, to help raise awareness and much needed money for mental health charities and to end any stigma. The Virgin Money Challenge Rides have a distance to suit everyone and I’m really looking forward to heading out with the team on Saturday. The event is tough but enjoyable, as it passes through our fantastic countryside, with the support of the North East people on the way round making it a truly special event.”

Chris Higham, Strategic Payments Manager at Virgin Money, and riding for NECCR added:

I love cycling and I’m really looking forward to taking part in the Cyclone this year, which will be the third time I have taken part. Being part of a team really helps you to focus when the going gets tough, but we know it will be worth it. Even when we are cycling up the gruelling Ryals hill, we will be motivated by the thought of raising money for NECCR.”

To support those riding the Cyclone Challenge Rides, you can donate via their Virgin Money Giving pages to Heads Together or the NECCR.

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