Help for Heroes Patrons Lorraine Kelly and Ross Kemp today led the launch of Hero Ride 2014, encouraging the great British public to sign up to take part in the biggest cycling event in support of our wounded heroes the country has ever seen.
Joined by fellow Patron Peta Cavendish, Ambassador Pollyanna Woodward and wounded ex-Servicemen Steve McCulley and Ben Zissman, Hero Ride 2014 launched at the EDF Energy London Eye, with the aim to raise £1.5 million.
On the back of the hugely successful event last year, Hero Ride 2014 will see organised routes from Brussels, Edinburgh, Manchester, Cardiff and the Help for Heroes Recovery Centre at Tedworth House, Tidworth. All rides will come together on Sunday 08 June for the Grand Finale, where an anticipated 2,000 riders will cycle together from Blackheath into Horse Guards Parade.
***Click here to sign up for Hero Ride, text HERO RIDE to 60777 (standard text rate) or call us on 01725 514106***
With 10,535 British men and women injured in the recent conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan, and Combat Stress estimating that 40,000 Servicemen and women will suffer from some form of invisible injury over the coming years, Help for Heroes have stressed the importance of the £1.5 million fundraising target.
The funds raised by Hero Ride 2014 will help the Charity continue to deliver direct support to Service Personnel and Veterans who have suffered life-changing injuries and illnesses. Help for Heroes needs to deliver two key new projects this year; The Hidden Wounds Psychological Wellbeing Programme and an expansion of the Northern Help for Heroes Recovery Centre in Catterick. Both projects will be instrumental in the long term support of individuals and their families.
Chain Reaction Cycles has also today come on board as the official retail partner for Hero Ride 2014. With core values of excellent service and products as well as a huge passion for sport they are sure to make the event even more amazing.
Lorraine Kelly, a long term Patron of the Charity, said, “Help for Heroes has transformed the support our heroes who have been injured receive. I am so proud to be a Patron for the Charity and continue to be amazed at the generosity and support the public gives our Armed Services. Hero Ride 2014 is the next chance for the public to get behind our Servicemen and women and take up a fun challenge or donate and show their support.”
Actor Ross Kemp has long been associated with supporting our Armed Forces, said, “Hero Ride is one hell of a challenge but this is nothing compared to sacrifices our Servicemen and women give for our country. We should all be so proud of our heroes and the sacrifices they have made; Help for Heroes has taken this pride that step further to enable them to have support for life if they are devastatingly injured in combat. I encourage every one of you out there to play your part in Hero Ride 2014 – whether you create your own bike ride or join one of the larger organised rides, come together on Sunday 8 June in celebration for our Heroes and dig deep in your pockets and donate.”
TV presenter Pollyanna Woodward recently visited Tedworth House Recovery Centre and said, “Help for Heroes is a real inspiration, to have seen first-hand the difference the Charity makes to the lives of our heroes and their families makes me so proud to be a part of it. There is an incredible and caring support system for people that have dedicated their lives to protect ours.
“I look forward to helping them raise money especially through brilliant events like Hero Ride.”
In 2014 UK troops will withdraw from Afghanistan and it is essential that support continues for those who have suffered life-changing injury or illness.
Bryn Parry, Co-Founder of Help for Heroes, said, “Troops may be withdrawing from Afghanistan but our support will be there for those who are injured and their families, for life. Our ambition is for Hero Ride 2014 to be bigger and better than ever before and I would like to see the British public continue with their generosity for our heroes. Cycle with us, donate to our good cause and show your support with pride.”
H4H Patron Peta Cavendish, wife of cycling legend Mark, will be completing the Big Battlefield Bike Ride for the third time,said, “Both Mark and I are so proud to be Patrons for Help for Heroes and we will be heavily involved in supporting Hero Ride 2014.
“I cannot wait to show my support to those amazingly courageous servicemen and women and look forward to seeing the British public in their droves in London once again on 8 June.”
H4H Patron Mark Cavendish, who is the lead Hero Ride 2014 Ambassador, said, “The Hero Ride is an amazing opportunity to cycle alongside our wounded men and women and to hear their inspirational stories. I’ve seen how Help for Heroes supports them and their families and in 2014 that support is going to be more important than ever. I’d urge anyone who has ever thought about doing something life-changing or challenging to do their bit and sign-up to the Hero Ride 2014. I hope to join the ride myself and my wife Peta will be taking part in her third Hero Ride. We’ll both be cheering you along the way!”
To sign up to Hero Ride 2014 or donate go to www.helpforheroes.org.uk or text HERO RIDE to 60777 (standard text rate).