Cancer survivor takes on 660-mile challenge

Min Peterken, Kevin Balsdon and Jo Davis will cycle 660 miles for charity
Min Peterken, Kevin Balsdon and Jo Davis will cycle 660 miles for charity

A cancer survivor from Westham is cycling 660 miles on an eight day bike ride to raise funds for charity.

Kevin Balsdon, 47, from Westham, Pevensey, was diagnosed with Non Hodgkins Lymphoma.

The disease attacks the lymphatic system which is a network of vessels and glands spread throughout the body.

Kevin, who is a Freedom Leisure Fitness instructor in Hailsham, is in remission from the disease after completing an intense chemotherapy programme three years ago.

Now he has decided to raise funds for Macmillan Cancer Care and Cancer Research UK.

He said: “Without the work and support of Macmillan and Cancer Research I probably wouldn’t have survived my cancer.

“I have worked hard to regain my fitness and am now able to undertake this cycle challenge to raise funds and awareness for the two charities.”

Kevin initially joined the Hailsham Leisure Centre in January 2011 in a bid to regain his fitness after his cancer treatment.

He went on to train at Freedom Leisure to be a fitness instructor and now teaches group cycling, step classes, and Body Pump at the Uckfield, Hailsham and Summerfields centres.

He is being joined on his epic ride by two members from Freedom Leisure - Min Peterken from Waldron takes part in Kevin’s group cycling class at Uckfield Leisure Centre and has chosen to cycle 300 miles to Paris to raise money for the Stroke Association. Jo Davis from Pevensey is a member at Hailsham Leisure Centre and she will accompany Kevin for the entire journey to Geneva.

The cyclists left London Blackheath on Wednesday (September 4) andwill arrive in Paris tomorrow (Saturday September 7). Kevin and Jo will then ride a further 360 miles to reach Geneva by Thursday (September 12).

Stuart Crawford, Freedom Leisure centre manager at Uckfield Leisure Centre said: “Kevin is an inspirational member and colleague and I applaud his determination and courage to undertake this daunting cycle ride for the charities who helped him. Not only has he regained very good health, he is now sharing his passion for fitness.”

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