Sandy fire station cycling 180Eight firefighters who are embarking on a 400-mile cycle ride from Bedfordshire to France have received a £1,000 boost from Persimmon Homes East Midlands.

The firefighters and eight friends will pedal from their station in Sandy to Malaunay, setting off on October 28, to raise cash for St John's Hospice in Moggerhanger and The Fire Fighters Charity - and will now do so with £5,000 already in the bank.

The donation from the leading house builder comes as part of its Community Champions project, which will see a pot of £24,000 being given to local groups and charities over the next 12 months.

Firefighter Simon Ford said: “We are extremely grateful to Persimmon Homes East Midlands for this generous donation. Two firefighters from Sandy Fire Station lost their wives to cancer recently and it has had a massive impact on their families and also the fire service family as a whole.

"We decided to raise as much as we could to support the charities that have supported us at this sad time. None of us are cyclists but we are just very passionate about trying to succeed in hitting our target of £10,000. This gift from Persimmon takes over the £5,000 mark, which is truly fantastic."

Simon McDonald, deputy managing director at Persimmon Homes East Midlands, said the community initiative was a way of supporting people across every city, town and village where the company works and wished the team all the best on their journey.”

The Persimmon Community Champions initiative is a national programme where charities and groups can apply for funding up to the value of £1,000 to match money they have already raised themselves. Nationwide the company will donate a total of £750,000.

You can apply for next month’s donation by completing an online form at

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