Pedal power for cancer

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A Bilsthorpe teenager is going the extra mile for charity this summer by cycling from John O’Groats to Land’s End.

Sixteen-year-old Toby Nadal was diagnosed with a cancerous tumour at the base of his brain and during his hospital stay decided to raise money to improve facilities for teenagers.

The Southwell Minster student needs to raise between £2,000-3,000 to finance a back-up crew for the 875-mile slog.

Toby is taking on the ride in aid of the Teenage Cancer Trust - a charity which aims to allow youngsters with the disease to feel at home while in hospital.

Toby’s dad, Tim, said: “While he was in hospital he realised the facilities on the ward were ok for little children but there was not much for teenagers.

“So when he came out he came up with the idea of the ride.”

With the help of his school fundraising group Toby has already raised more than £12,000, which has gone to help Teenage Cancer Trust build a ward at Queen’s Medical Centre, Nottingham.

Now he wants to use the ride to raise more for the building project.

Said Tim: “We cannot let him do the ride alone so he needs sponsorship for that but we need sponsors for the Teenage Cancer Trust too.

“He is nervous about the ride. At Easter we did a road-climb which worked out about 1,000 ft in seven miles.

“Both of us are very apprehensive - I think going up there has brought it home to him.

“It will be between 70-80 miles per day, day after day.”

But despite his best efforts, Tim will not let his dad join him for the entire trip.

Toby’s tumour can never be completely removed and may be need repeated operations.

It sits quite close to the 16-year-old’s spinal chord and any operations could be risky as it is close to vital blood supply.

A Teenage Cancer Trust spokesman said: “Our units are designed to feel like a home from home, so young people with cancer are able to keep their lives on track.

“We have spent over 21 years getting to know young people with cancer and understanding what they need. So you might walk into a unit and find a game of pool going on.

“It is about bringing young people with cancer together.”

If you want to sponsor Toby email tim.nadal@tiscali.co.uk.