Determined Edinburgh charity fundraiser plans to pedal from Land's End to John O' Groats

An Edinburgh man is taking on a gruelling attempt at Land’s End to John O’Groats in order to raise funds for Children’s Hospices Across Scotland (CHAS) next month.

Tuesday, 27th July 2021, 4:55 am

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John Purcell aged 47, was due to cycle from Tromso in Norway to Berlin, Germany last summer. Difficulties in travelling through multiple countries meant that the trip was cancelled and John had to think again.

He said: “This year, I will be staying closer to home for an alternative challenge – the official GBDuro route. A 4 stage, 2,000km Individual Time Trial (ITT), it features nearly 30,000m elevation (that’s around 3 and a half times up Mt Everest).

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In it for the long haul: John Purcell

“I aim to complete the route in a maximum time of 12 days. Starting at Land’s End, England and ending in John O’Groats, Scotland, this will take me up some of the highest peaks in the country, on roads, gravel paths, up mountains, through forests, muddy bogs and whatever other terrain lies along the way. This is no ordinary adventure – relatively few people have ever actually made it to the end of the route. I will be starting the challenge on Sunday August 8th 2021 from Land’s End, and can safely say that this is going to be seriously tough.

“As someone who is very keen to support the vital and compassionate work CHAS carries out, it is my honour to represent them and to try and raise as much as I can to help them continue their mission.”Senior Community and Challenge Events Fundraiser Fiona Leslie said: “We are thrilled that John has chosen CHAS as the charity to fundraise for in this effort, which we understand is a superhuman task for even the most seasoned cyclist. We wish him well on the trip.

“The funds and awareness raised by John will help CHAS on our mission to reach every single baby, child and young person who needs them, despite the current situation.”

CHAS has dramatically transformed its increasingly important services by setting up Scotland’s first ever virtual hospice to support children and families who are having to completely self-isolate.

Follow John’s training for the event at

To donate to John’s page, please visit

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