The chairman of a national charity for people with learning disabilities, HFT, has raised over £40,000 by cycling from Land’s End to John O’Groats in the HFT “From End to End” Challenge.
Richard Barber OBE marked his first year as chairman of HFT by tackling the bicycle ride from Land’s End to John O’Groats in the HFT “From End to End” challenge. All funds raised will go towards HFT’s work in providing support for over a thousand people with a wide variety of learning disabilities, including Downs Syndrome, Autism and Challenging Behaviour.
A former director of British Steel and the Corus Group, Richard tackled the cross country bike ride challenge together with three friends from his days at Oxford University. All four are in their mid-sixties and while Richard was riding solely for HFT the other three were also supporting their own chosen charities.
The challenge began on Monday, 19th May when Richard set off with his three fellow cyclists from Land’s End in Cornwall and ended at noon on 6th June when the four cyclists crossed the finishing line at John O’Groats to complete their journey across the UK.
“What a memorable moment it was to see the sea stretching out to Orkney ahead of us, and to ride those last 200 yards to the finishing line four abreast, singing Harry Lauder’s famous song “Keep right on to the end of the road…” at the top of our voices”, said Richard.
“I am so grateful to everyone for their truly wonderful encouragement and support. Through the generosity of so many people, we have raised a sum of between £40,000 to £45,000. What a reason for gratitude to everyone that is – and what a huge part of the inspiration I have derived from the whole unforgettable adventure!”
Richard, who is now retired, became chairman of HFT in October 2007, his association with HFT goes back nearly 43 years when his sister, Lucinda, became one of the first girls to be supported by the charity in 1964 as a resident of its first home at Frocester in Gloucestershire.
Inspired by the level of care and support provided by HFT for Lucinda, Richard became a Trustee of the charity and has worked tirelessly to support its work for people with learning disabilities.
Today HFT provides services for over 1,000 people in supported living, registered care homes, advocacy, supported employment and day services throughout the country. The charity also runs a Family Carer Support Service which provides support each year for 4,000 family carers of adults with learning disabilities.
Issue Date: 30 June 2008
For further information please contact:
Richard Barber, HFT chairman, Tel: 020 8549 2353
Irena Babic, HFT PR Consultant, Tel: 01275 343547
Notes to editors
Previously known as The Home Farm Trust, HFT is a registered national charity for adults with a learning disability.
HFT provides services for over 1,000 people in supported living, registered care homes, advocacy, supported employment and day services.
The charity also runs a Family Carer Support Service (FCSS) which provides support each year for 4,000 family carers of adults with learning disabilities.