Cyclists gear up for London Bikeathon to help Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research
PUBLISHED: 12:17 12 August 2014 | UPDATED: 12:25 12 August 2014
Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research charity
Nick Jones is gearing up for this year's London Bikeathon cycle challenge after surviving a deadly bout of Hodgkin lymphoma.
He wants to raise funds for the Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research blood cancer charity which is close to his heart.
The 32-year-old from Stepney has challenged himself to cycle the 52-mile route on August 31.
Nick is taking part with partner Simon Taylor, whose mother Jenny had non-Hodgkin lymphoma.
The pair signed up for their first bike challenge in 2011 after Jenny died at 64 and managed to raise £700 that year.
But six months later, Nick was himself diagnosed with the blood cancer disease.
“I was given antibiotics on a business trip for what was believed to be a tooth abscess,” he recalled.
“But a side-effect of the medication was a severe stomach complaint that persisted for months.
“I had flu-like symptoms and lost weight and was suffering drenching night sweats.”
A scan later showed the fourth stage of Hodgkin lymphoma and he began eight months of chemotherapy.
“A second scan showed I was responding—which was great news,” he said. “But the chemotherapy was rough, with sickness, agonising pain in my bones after each injection, headaches, sickness and constipation.”
But in January, 2013, Nick received the news that his cancer was in remission.
Now, 18 months on, he and Simon are taking part in their second Bikeathon.
“I feel grateful to have come through Hodgkin lymphoma,” he added. “As difficult as my own cancer experience was, we both have been affected by those who continue to have a harder time than I ever did.”
The 18th London Bikeathon is expected to attract 3,000 cyclists who will be passing passing iconic landmarks such as the Tower of London, The Shard, St Paul’s Cathedral, London Eye and Big Ben. They can choose a 26-mile or 52-mile route to and from Coram’s Fields in Holborn, or 100 miles starting from Richmond.
Matt Lawley, from Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research, said: “We are always inspired by the dedication of supporters like Nick and Simon. Every penny raised for research helps our mission to stop people dying and making patients’ lives better.”
Last year’s London Bikathon raised a record £830,000. Supporters now want to bust the £1 million mark.