Brave Oliver inspires fund-raising cyclists

Oliver Johnson, centre, with family, from left, dad Phil, mum Donna, sister Ellie and big brother Callum
Oliver Johnson, centre, with family, from left, dad Phil, mum Donna, sister Ellie and big brother Callum

Pedal power and teamwork were needed when friends and relatives took on a fund-raising bike ride.

The journey from Southport to Abram did not go as planned for some of the cyclists taking on the challenge last Saturday.

But they still completed the ride and raised thousands of pounds for ward 84 at Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital.

The ride was organised in honour of Abram youngster Oliver Johnson, who is coming to the end of three years of chemotherapy treatment at the hospital after being diagnosed with leukaemia as a toddler.

His mum Donna Johnson said: “It went really well. The last seven or eight miles were really hard because one of the bikes had a few punctures and we couldn’t fix it in the end, so we had to carry it, but we made it back eventually.”

The 31 cyclists included Mrs Johnson, her husband Phil, daughter Ellie, 18, and son Callum, 14.

They cycled around 20 miles and finished at the Bucks Head pub in Abram.

Mrs Johnson said: “It was emotional but it was a good day.”

The group had aimed to raise £500 to fund research and buy toys and equipment for children on the hospital’s cancer ward.

But Mrs Johnson said: “We are currently at £2,950 which is amazing.”

Six-year-old Oliver was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia when he was just two.

Since then he has been having chemotherapy every day, taking it as medication at home and going to hospital every two weeks.

His mum said he does pick up infections easily, but he is doing well and attends Abram St John’s CE Primary School.

After three years of treatment, Oliver will finish chemotherapy next month. There is a bell on ward 84 and he will ring it on Tuesday, July 11 to mark the end of his treatment.

Donations for Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital www.justgiving.com/fundraising/oliversbikeride.