A NORTH Yorkshire motorcyclist is planning a remarkable 15,000-mile charity ride from York to South Africa in memory of seven-year-old cancer victim Jamie Inglis.
Michael Atkins, 42, said he will travel on a Triumph Tiger 800 XC across two continents and 21 countries from York Minster to the Cape of Good Hope.
Harrogate man Mr Atkins, who used to work with Jamie’s father John, is taking part in the challenge to raise money in Jamie’s memory and for The Pilgrims Hospice in Kent, which cared for his mother and father-in-law.
Seven-year-old Lord Deramore’s School pupil Jamie passed away following a four-year battle against the rare childhood cancer neuroblastoma.
Mr Atkins, a married father-of-one, said he hopes to raise as much as £250,000 for the causes. He said: “As a father to the most wonderful little boy myself, I simply could not even begin to imagine what Vicky and John Inglis went through.
“To have their precious little boy taken from them must have been devastating. I made a promise to Jamie and his parents. That promise was to raise awareness of neuroblastoma and the effect it has on people’s lives. I also promised to raise funds in his memory.”
He said he is having stickers made up for the bike’s panniers and will have a red Power Ranger to go on the front of the bike, in Jamie’s memory.
Mr Atkins said he is also having a flag made up in honour of Jamie and his mother and father-in-law, which he hopes to fly at the Cape of Good Hope.
The expedition, which is planned for next year, is expected to take from four to six months to complete.
Jamie’s parents have thanked people for their “amazing support” which allowed Jamie pioneering treatment in the United States and Germany.
They have said they want to continue to raise money for the Neuroblastoma Alliance to help save the lives of other children with the illness – including Jamie’s friends Ryan Edwards and Robyn Higgins.
For more information, or to sponsor Mr Atkins, visit eat-sleep-bike.blogspot.co.uk
To donate in Jamie’s memory, visit justgiving.com/in-memory-of-jamie-inglis