Tim Farr, Paralympian athlete, is calling on all keen cyclists to support a new London to Paris accessible cycling challenge organised by leading charities, Aspire and Back Up.

Covering 300kms, a team of handcyclists and cyclists will set off from London to ride through Kent, Dover and historic French towns. The challenge will finish at the foot of the Eiffel Tower and, after it, cyclists will have the opportunity to explore Paris.

 “When you have been told you will never walk again, cycling from London to Paris seems like a hopeless dream,” Tim Farr said. “This new challenge shows everyone that life doesn’t have to stop if you’re paralysed.”

London 2 Paris logo

There are estimated to be 40,000 people paralysed by spinal cord injury in the UK today. “Every eight hours someone is told they will never walk again, it can happen to anyone at any time and no one is prepared for how it will change their life,” Brian Carlin, Aspire’s CEO, said.

Back Up and Aspire help thousands of people of all ages, backgrounds and levels of injury to rebuild their lives after paralysis. Back Up’s wheelchair skills and courses help people overcome the challenges of returning to work or school after an injury. Aspire’s services, which include Aspire Grants and Aspire Housing, help people move from injury to independence.

 “The services our charities provide are now more important than ever,” Louise Wright, Back Up’s CEO, said. “All the money raised will go directly towards improving the lives of people affected by paralysis.” 

Last year, the charities launched a partnership to provide joined up support for people who are paralysed. This partnership means that anyone who accesses one charity’s services has the opportunity to access the services of the other.

“We are delighted to be teaming up with Back Up for this cycling challenge which will see cyclists and handcyclists taking on an exciting challenge to support people with spinal cord injuries,” Carlin said.

The charities are looking for cyclists and handcyclists to go on an exciting adventure from London to Paris, while supporting thousands of people affected by paralysis. 

Click here for further information and to sign up or email rebecca.gowler@aspire.org.uk.

Rob Groves handcycling