Fundraising cyclists help pay for minibuses for two Sheffield schools

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Two Sheffield schools have been presented with minibuses after a cycling challenge raised £200,000.

Charity The Lords Taverners and financial company Investec Wealth and Investment organised a fundraising challenge which saw 100 cyclists riding between all the cricket grounds used in the 2005 Ashes series in England.

Barnsley-born former England cricketer Darren Gough was among those who completed the 300-mile route.

Rowan School in Totley and Freeman College in Sheffield city centre each received a new accessible minibus thanks to sponsorship money raised.

Rowan specialises in educating primary age children with complex speech, language and communication difficulties including Autistic Spectrum Conditions.

Freeman College provides day and residential education and care for 16-25 year-olds with complex learning, mental health and behavioural needs.

Since 1976, The Lord’s Taverners - a youth cricket and disability charity set up to give disadvantaged and disabled young people a sporting chance - has donated 1,050 minibuses to schools across the UK.

Chief Executive Paul Robin said: “The Lord’s Taverners is delighted to present two new minibuses to Rowan School and Freeman College.

“The minibus scheme is deep-rooted in our values to enhance the prospects of young disadvantaged and disabled people in the UK through the medium of sport.

“Thanks to the fantastic work of Investec and the participants of the Investec Ashes Cycle Challenge we are able to support more schools across the UK and create even more sporting chances.”

James Bedingfield, Senior Investment Director at Investec Wealth & Investment, which sponsored the Ashes test this summer, said: “It was extremely humbling to see the culmination of our fundraising efforts over the summer to contribute towards minibuses for the Rowan School and Freeman College.

“It was fantastic to have so many of our local cyclists take part in the presentation – it really brought it home to us how much this means to the young people.”

Every year, The Lord’s Taverners donates over £3 million.