I don’t usually like to talk about all the charity work I do. That’s because I rarely do any, save for giving the odd tenner to mates who are doing a bit of fundraising and, of course, regular donations to the Broleur Beer Beverage Benevolent Fund (BBBBF). All contributions are welcomely received.

The London To Brighton Bike Ride was something different, though. Not only because it’s one of the more iconic routes in the south-east, and not because I could raise a bit of dosh for my chosen cause, We Are Family. I’d wanted to do London-Brighton for a long time because it pulled at my taut heartstrings. It had a sentimental allure.

Twenty years ago, I remember our Dad rode London-Brighton, along with our Mum, Sisteur and our Broleur-in-law (although it must have been the BHF version). I can still recall how awe-struck I was when he recounted Ditchling Beacon and just how tough he found it; when he talked about the bonhomie between the riders, and about the wonderful support they received at the finish.

‘Big John’ might have struggled up Ditchling because he did it on an old-school mountain bike so heavy it was probably forged in Mount Doom along with the One Ring. Even so, his achievement - and our family’s - made this a must-do event in my mind.

Read Andy Elliot’s full London to Brighton review here

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