Schoolgirl to make 150km bike ride to Wigan Pier

A 12-year-old schoolgirl has been inspired to cycle the 150km route from Leeds to Wigan Pier to raise funds for children living in poverty.
Esther with dad RichardEsther with dad Richard
Esther with dad Richard

Esther Adamson plans to pedal the route having been inspired by legendary author George Orwell and England footballer Marcus Rashford.

Having launched a JustGiving page a fortnight ago she has already raised £400 towards her £1,000 target.

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Esther said: “I think child poverty is a big, big thing that we need to sort out in the world.

“I think there are loads of children out there, children and adults, who have no money or have no food and they need supplies to stay alive.”

Esther, a year seven pupil at Leeds’s Allerton High School, has been learning about George Orwell and his book The Road to Wigan Pier at school.

The book, first published back in 1937, documents a broken impoverished Britain, before delivering a long meditation on creating a fairer society but for young Esther not enough has changed in British society in the 84 years since the book was first released.

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Esther said: “We visited Wigan Pier as a family and I realised that it was on the Leeds-Liverpool canal route which we often cycle on.

“The Road to Wigan Pier was Orwell’s account of poverty in the 1930s and in 2021 it still exists and shouldn’t.”

Young Esther has felt the support of her peers and hopes that her challenge can help inspire others.

“Lots of my friends have been very supportive and my school have been there and promoted my sponsorship, ” she said.

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“They put it on Instagram and Twitter even sending a newsletter out. They are happy for me and I hope that more will get involved in future.”

A further source of inspiration for Esther has been Rashford. The Premier League star has been front and centre to anti-child poverty campaigns in recent times and even managed to force a government U-turn to continue free school meals during lockdown.

The ride is planned for March 5 and 6 next year to coincide with the 85th birthday of the book To donate visit

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