Search

Stowmarket ref cycles to the Somme to raise money for charity

Paul Quick at the Tyne Cot Commonwealth War Graves Cemetery near Passchendaele in Belgium at the end of the ride. Picture: SUFFOLK FA

Paul Quick at the Tyne Cot Commonwealth War Graves Cemetery near Passchendaele in Belgium at the end of the ride. Picture: SUFFOLK FA

Archant

A Stowmarket referee who took part in the Ride to the Somme to raise money for charity said the cycle event was “a moving experience”.

Paul Quick was one of 140 cyclists to take on the 220-mile ride, which included the laying of wreaths on the Football Battalions’ Memorial at Longueval.

The event has so far raised more than £100,000 for SSAFA – the Armed Forces Charity, which is the UK’s oldest tri-services charity.

Paul worked as a REME aircraft engineer for nearly 30 years and still works at Wattisham Airfield as the fleet planner for the British Army’s Apache helicopters.

The 51-year-old, who referees in the Bostik and Thurlow Nunn leagues, was one of two football officials to take part in the ride.

Paul said: “To meet and ride with such a diverse group of people with the single aim of raising funds for SSAFA was simply amazing.

“Visiting the Football Battalions at Delville Wood was quite a moving experience but this was overshadowed by the visual evidence of the enormity of the loss of life.

“You can write the number of dead and missing on a sheet of paper and it is just that, a number.

“To see the amount of cemeteries, headstones and names on memorials really brought home the devastating effect this war had on families and communities.”

The ride, which began on August 30, visited the Somme Valley and Ypres in the centenary year of The Battle of Arras and the Battle of Passchendaele and the memorials at Delville Wood, Vimy ridge, Mametz Wood, Thiepval and Tyne Cot.

The British Army lost nearly 1million men in The Great War with over 2m wounded.

In total, some 65m men were mobilised with 37m killed or wounded.

Armistice was signed on November 11, 1918, near Compiegne where the Ride to the Somme event concluded.

Paul, who has taken part in Ride London for the last two years, said the 140 cyclists were split into four groups.

Three groups rode 220 miles over three days and the fourth rode 155 miles.

The level 3 qualified Suffolk referee has currently raised £2,300 towards the impressive total of more than £100,000 which has been raised for SSAFA through the event.

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Stowmarket Mercury visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Stowmarket Mercury staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Stowmarket Mercury account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Other popular content

Yesterday, 18:54

Mystery surrounds the death of a 52-year-old woman from Suffolk as a post-mortem examination on her body has come back “inconclusive”.

Yesterday, 22:52

A woman had to be freed from her vehicle by firefighters after it was involved in a crash in Suffolk.

Yesterday, 19:38

One lane of the Orwell Bridge in Suffolk was closed tonight while emergency services dealt with a multi-vehicle collision.

Yesterday, 18:35

A Co-op store in Ipswich has hosted a roadshow event as part of a campaign to protect shopworkers from anti-social behaviour.

Local weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 8°C

min temp: 2°C

Show Job Lists

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
MyDate24 MyPhotos24