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Friends united in taking on UK's top peak

By Cornish Guardian  |  Posted: March 09, 2014

BIG EFFORT:  From left, Ant Barrett, Tom Pearson, Andy Cunningham and Matt Jago, will cycle from Land's End to John o' Groats.

BIG EFFORT: From left, Ant Barrett, Tom Pearson, Andy Cunningham and Matt Jago, will cycle from Land's End to John o' Groats.

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AN INDEPENDENT filmmaker from St Austell and his three friends will be going the extra mile when they cycle 800 miles and then climb the highest mountain in the UK.

Ant Barrett, of Woodland Road, will be joined by friends Tom Pearson, Andy Cunningham and Matt Jago, for the End to End challenge in memory of his dad, Frank, next month.

The group will cycle between Land's End and John o'Groats, and are hoping to arrive at their end destination on either May 2 or May 3.

All the money raised from the challenge will go to the Royal Cornwall Hospitals Charitable Funds, which will then be donated to the Phoenix Acute Stroke Unit at the hospital in Treliske, which provides initial care for 1,150 stroke victims each year. Mr Barrett, 30, said: "We're going to cycle from Land's End to John o'Groats and when we get to Fort William we're going to climb Ben Nevis.

The work of the hospital is very close to 30-year-old Mr Barrett's heart after his father Frank, 67, suffered a stroke in November 1998.

Mr Barrett senior suffered complications while in hospital, eventually developing pneumonia and becoming too weak to keep fighting and lost his battle on December 19 that year.

His son said: "The support we give them will help to optimise this care even further, providing advanced care right from the point of entry. Hosting this event is my way of paying tribute to my father whilst also raising money for stroke care in Cornwall."

The film-maker said he has known his fellow cyclists for many years and he and Mr Pearson, who went to school together, have talked about riding to John O'Groats since they were teenagers. "It never happened and at my 30th birthday we said we have got to do it," Mr Barrett added.

Mr Barrett's girlfriend, who is Mr Jago's sister, Kerry, will be the support driver during the challenge.

Donations can be made at www.justgiving.com/Ant-Barrett-LETJOG-2014.

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