Mayor of Ballymena Audrey Wells MBE hosted a reception for the Ballymena Road Club – Chain Reaction Cycles - fun tour cyclists last week.
She presented medals and certificates of merit to the successful participants, including eight riders who had achieved full attendance of all thirteen tours.
Eleanor Duffin, from the Chernobyl children appeal NI, was also in attendance.
The charity fund reached a record total again this year with £1089 being donated to the Chernobyl Children’s appeal NI.
2014 was the ninth successive year during which the club supported the CCA. During that time the cyclists have donated £6675.50 to this very worthwhile cause.
This year’s series was the most successful ever and attracted a record total participation of 943 over the 13 weeks (average 73 per week) during which 163 different cyclists completed at least one tour. The previous record was 779 in 2012.
Eight riders achieved full attendance, - John Elliott, for a third successive season, Sean Elliott, Iris Grant, Sammy Kerr, Jackie Knowles, Pius McKernan, Martin Ruddy and, of course, Rex Bonar who was in attendance every week to open up the car park and clubrooms.
There were 32 gold medallists who completed at least 11 tours: 23 silver medallists, who had at least 8 tours and 35 bronze for 5 tours.
The mayor said she was pleased to hear that the tours had once again been very successful and that they had been completed safely and without any difficulties.
She praised the efforts of all the participants and congratulated them on their fund raising efforts.
Ballymena Road Club’s touring committee member Richard Wilson thanked the mayor for her hospitality and also for the council’s continued support of the fun tours.
Eleanor Duffin accepted a cheque from the club and explained that all the money raised goes to the work of the CCA without deduction of any expenses.
She said she was very grateful for the continued fund raising by the cyclists and was delighted to accept the money for the CCA.
She also said it was a fitting and lasting memorial to Martin McKernan who, along with his wife Jennie, had been a host family.
Martin McKernan was a member of Ballymena Road Club’s touring committee until his untimely death in August 2000.
Chernobyl Children Appeal (NI) Ltd. was formed in 1994 to help alleviate the suffering of children from the contaminated regions of Belarus and Ukraine in the aftermath of the Chernobyl Disaster in 1986. The charity operates on a cross community and voluntary basis with support branches spread widely across Northern Ireland.
Ballymena Road Club cyclists will continue with their weekend touring and training rides this Saturday 20th and Sunday 21st December.
The groups will assemble as usual at Rex Bonar house Railway Street with departure times of 9.15am and 9.30am on both days.