Two friends to cycle over 1000km from Seville to Santiago de Compostela in aid of charity
In April 2015, Peter Munt-Davies from St Ishmaels and Mike Phillips from Newport will check their bikes onto a Ryanair flight to Seville and pedal their way northwards across over 1000km along the Camino de Santiago in Spain to raise money for charities Commonwealth Countries League Education Fund (CCLEF), Macmillan Cancer Care and The Wildlife Trust of South and West Wales.
The Camino de Santiago, or the Way of St. James, is a pilgrimage route to the shrine of St. James in the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela, Galicia, in northwest Spain. It was one of the most important pilgrimages during medieval times. The Way can take one of dozens of routes from all over Europe to Santiago.
Peter and Mike will ride the Via de la Plata which is the longest route in Spain. It runs from Seville in Andalucia, crosses the central plain passing through the provinces of Extremadura and Castilla y Leon and finally heads west to Santiago de Compostela in Galicia. Large sections of this route have remained unchanged for over 2000 years when it began as a Roman trade route. The terrain is hilly and much of the way is off road so they will ride mountain bikes and aim to complete the whole trip in three weeks.
When asked why they are doing it, their answer was immediate, "because it is as rewarding as it is challenging. To take part in an activity that has continued unbroken for well over a thousand years appeals to us as does meeting and overcoming the many challenges that long distance cycling can present."
As Peter explained, “Ever since my first visit to Santiago, I have wanted to do the Camino. Now that I have the time and opportunity to do so I would like to use the experience to raise money for the CCLEF. I was a teacher for some years in Jamaica and fully appreciate the vital importance and value of education, especially for women and girls. Last year in Sri Lanka we met two of the girls receiving financial support from the fund and saw first-hand the tangible benefits of the work the fund strives to achieve. If, by doing this bike ride, I can raise awareness of the vital work carried out by CCLEF as well as raising some money, then it will have been worth it."
Mike is riding in aid of two charities. He said, “I decided to do this trip early in 2014 as I fancied a little adventure. Subsequently, in 2014, I lost two good friends, Kathleen and Stephen, so I have decided to raise some funds for two charities that they would have supported in life, Macmillan Cancer Care (Kathleen) and The Wildlife Trust of South and West Wales (Stephen).
The benefit for me so far is that my overall fitness has improved no end due to the training, a combination of spinning and cycling, that I have been doing in order to get fit for the trip. Stephen did this trip himself some years ago and gave me invaluable advice: ‘Wear earplugs in the Hostels at night in order to shut out the snoring.’ I think I'll do that!”
If you would like to support Peter and Mike in their fund raising efforts then please visit their Just Giving pages –
Peter’s Just Giving page - https://www.justgiving.com/Peter-Munt-Davies
For more information please contact