Blue Mountain Group CEO Nigel Thomas took on his toughest challenge yet this summer as he attempted to ride a 1940s, single-gear butcher’s bike all the way from Land’s End to John O’Groats to raise money for charity.
The former Royal Marine and Special Forces veteran had completed his initial ‘Butcher’s Bike Challenge’ in 2013 with a 130 mile ride across Wales. But Nigel, who is aiming to raise £1 million for charities that support soldiers such as Team Army, Hire a Hero, Walk on Wales and the Ray Gravell and Friends Charitable Trust, decided to go a step further with the 1,027 mile epic bike adventure along the length of the UK – even carrying his own tent and provisions for camping along the way.
He was supported throughout the challenge by the charities he raised money for, as well as receiving encouragement along the way from a number of surprising cheerleaders including Jim Motherwell, the Queen’s Piper (who piped Nigel across the Scottish border), a number of Marine commando units who yomped alongside him, plus celebrities and sports personalities from the world of rugby – with a number of visits to Premiership Rugby club stadiums along the route.
Nigel said, ‘We rely upon our soldiers to be there when we need them, so I’m doing this for all the boys and girls in the Forces who need our help now – a chance to play the sports that are so vital to their physical and mental well-being, to find a job after leaving the military or perhaps help recovering from injury or illness. We owe them’.
TV presenter Bear Grylls, a close friend of Nigel’s said, ‘This is going to be a tough challenge but that’s Nigel through and through – determined to help those who most need it and to do it the hard way …and with a smile to the world!’
Blue Mountain Group is a Carmarthen-based security firm that also offers a number of security qualifications and is a Highfield Approved Centre.
For more information on the ‘Butcher’s Bike Challenge’, which took place from 18 to 30 August 2014, click here.
If you would like to donate money, click here or text TBBC14 (The Butcher Bike Challenge 2014) with the amount you would like to donate (e.g. TBBC14 £5) to 70070.
You can also follow Nigel on Twitter