Cyclists using pedal power on Norwich Bike Ride to raise thousands of pounds to fight heart disease

Cyclists hitting the road at the start of the Norwich Cycle Ride. Photo : Steve Adams

Cyclists hitting the road at the start of the Norwich Cycle Ride. Photo : Steve Adams - Credit: Steve Adams

More than a thousand cyclists are spending Sunday in the saddle and using pedal power to bike across Norfolk to boost the fight against heart disease.

The cyclists taking part in the British Heart Foundation's Norwich Bike Ride set off from outside City Hall this morning for one of three routes - 25 miles, 50 miles and 100 miles.

From the start in the centre of Norwich, all routes head north to Reepham. The shorter route then loops back past Blickling Hall, while the 100-mile riders head east up to the coast to the half-way point at Sheringham, then skirting the Broads before returning to the finish at Bishopgate.

Refreshment stops have been set up along the route, with stewards lining the route to keep a watchful eye on the riders.

The event is raising money for the British Heart Foundation and has been organised by Bike Events.

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More than 15,500 people in Norwich alone and just under 650,000 people in the East of England live with heart and circulatory disease.

All the money raised from the event will help the charity continue to fund essential medical research, preventing heart disease and revolutionising treatments for people living with debilitating heart conditions.

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Kate McCormack, fundraising event organiser for the British Heart Foundation, said: 'BHF research has helped halve death rates from heart and circulatory disease over the past 50 years - from transforming treatments for heart attacks to pioneering the surgical techniques that ensure most babies now survive congenital heart disease.

'However, heart and circulatory disease is still responsible for a quarter of all UK deaths and seven million people currently live with its burden.'

The riders were seen off this morning by Norwich's deputy Lord Mayor James Wright, who praised the riders for their fundraising efforts for the charity.

He said: 'It goes such a long way to help with the work they do.'

Organisers hopes this year's Norwich Bike Ride will raise at least £80,000 for the charity.

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