St Mary’s Church in Hook is looking for cyclists who can face a 200 mile challenge, cycling from Wiltshire back to the church. It’s all in aid of a major renovation of the church, to be launched at the end of September, to coincide with the cycle.
Vicar, Rev Philip Ball, explains, “We want to restore St Mary’s church in time for its 800thAnniversary replacing the roof, repairing stonework and making it even more a useful to the local community for the next 100 years or more. As well as weddings, Christenings and church services, we want to create space for special events, concerts, even business events and away days.”
Rev Philip is inviting cyclists young and old to participate. Local cycling clubs are welcome, and it is hoped that local businesses will encourage staff to take part. In fact, everybody is welcome. Cycling 200 miles in three days, the route is challenging, but very achievable for reasonably fit cyclists. And for those who aren’t able to do the full ride there will be local options and shorter routes.
“Our church is the oldest building in Goole and Hook by we think at least 400 years and has a wonderful history and heritage, .’We’d like it to be still serving the community centuries from now.” Philip commented. The last time it was renovated was way back in 1844, when much of the work was paid for by local land-owners Thomas and Lucy Sotheron. Who both had homes at Hook Hall and in the village of Shipton Moyne in Wiltshire, so what better way to launch this renovation, than to celebrate the last works done, This we will do by cycling between the Sotheron’s homes along a route that they must have taken many times, Or for those who can’t do the full distance cycling the last bit or doing part of the virtual ride or other sponsored cycling towards this event”
The 200 mile cyclists will gather in Wiltshire on the evening of Wednesday 29 September, and cycle the route over 3 days, mainly starting Thursday 30 September, and finishing with a party in Hook on Saturday 2 October.
“We anticipate that the event will be a lot of fun,” says Rev Philip. “It’s a decent challenge for experienced cyclists,and a serious one for the unfit ones like myself, but we’ll ride in ability groups, so everybody can go at their own pace.”
“I hope local businesses, from the largest to the smallest, may also get involved,” says Philip. “I can see friendly competition between rivals, to see who can send most cyclists, and who can raise most money.”
The restoration could cost as much as nearly £500,000, so the cycle will just be a start of many years fund raising and staged works leading up to 2025 the 800thAnniversary but it’s an important start.
“If we raise some money, launch our campaign, and people have a good time, forge friendships, and look forward to a refreshing drink at the end, it’ll be a great success,” says Rev Philip.
For anyone who’s interested in cycling or helping out, please contact us using firstname.lastname@example.org come to the next meeting about the ride at The Sotheron Arms in Hook, 8pm Thursday 8thJuly 2021