A NORTH-EAST businessman has tackled a gruelling four day bike ride through France to raise funds for a cancer charity.

While the elite riders of the Tour de France were making their way through Yorkshire, John Orchard, a director of Marchday, the owners of Lingfield Point, in Darlington, was taking part in a London to Paris bike ride.

The 500km ride, stopping at Calais, Abbeville, Beauvais and Paris, raised funds for Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research.

Loading article content

Mr Orchard contributed £1,000 to the fundraising total after being inspired to take on the ride due to the death of a friend from the illness.

He trained for the ride by completing laps of the Lingfield Point business park, alongside a number of colleagues who are also keen cyclists.

Mr Orchard said: “It was an incredible four days, filled with life-altering memories which I’ll never forget - and all while taking part for a great cause.

“There was a competitive streak running through those taking part even though it was for charity. It was a fantastic experience, although I have to admit to having very sore muscles.”