An octogenarian who just loves to ride her bike is taking on her first ever charity challenge at this year’s Tour De Vale.
Ingrid Holmes, an 82-year-old widow, has lived in Haddenham for 53 years and uses her bike to get around the village.
She is a member of her local U3A cycling group and takes part in its monthly bike rides.
But the Tour De Vale is Mrs Holmes’ first ever charity ride.
She said: “I’m really looking forward to it, I’ve never done anything like this before.
“I’m always riding my bike around Haddenham, it’s very useful, I’m by no means the oldest in my U3A group. Cycling is so environmentally friendly and Haddenham cyclists are working hard to lobby AVDC to put in a cycle route to Thame.
Cycling is so environmentally friendly and Haddenham cyclists are working hard to lobby AVDC to put in a cycle route to ThameIngrid Holmes
“I just thought doing the Tour De Vale would be rather fun, and hopefully I will be able to raise some money for Wheelpower; it is amazing what disabled people can do.”
She added: “It’s not long now, and I’m just hoping for some nice weather.”
And Ingrid, who has three grown-up children, says her whole family is active but that she has not yet told some of them about the challenge.
She said: “My daughter does triathlon so I think 15 miles is a bit small beer for her!”
Mrs Holmes is not alone in her quest to raise money for Wheelpower.
So far 1,000 people have signed up to take part in the event, which takes place on June 7.
Organisers are confident that all 2,000 places on the ride will sell out soon, with all money raised going to support Wheelpower.
Last year 1,841 people took part in the 100k, 60k and 25k rides.
People from as far afield as Somerset, North Wales and Grimsby have signed up for the challenge which starts and finishes at the Stoke Mandeville Stadium.
Wheelpower’s Joe Hall, who organises the ride, said: “Wheelpower is delighted that more and more people are taking part in the Mix96 Tour De Vale every year.
“We have made the decision to cap the entries at 2,000 places to give people the most enjoyable and safe experience. To have reached 1,000 entries with three weeks to go is a fantastic response, thank you everyone for joining in support of raising money for Wheelpower and helping us transform the lives of disabled people.”
Advanced entry to the event costs £15, and entry for under 16s is free. Any remaining places on the day will be charged at £30.
All money raised in sponsorship will help provide opportunities for disabled children and adults to get involved in wheelchair sport.
Last year 38,536 disabled people trained or took part in an event at Stoke Mandeville Stadium, at events delivered by Wheelpower which is based at the facility.
For more information about the event visit www.wheelpower.org.uk