September 7th, 2016

Artist puts down paintbrush and jumps in the saddle for charity

Artist puts down paintbrush and jumps in the saddle for charity Artist puts down paintbrush and jumps in the saddle for charity
Updated: 11:51 am, Jul 30, 2015

A BIG-hearted local artist has turned his love of cycling into a fund raising adventure in aid of Alcester Dementia Cafe.

Sculptor Richard Cresswell has just completed a 1,300 mile trip from Lands End to John O’Groats along byways and lanes in just sixteen-and-a-half days riding his recumbent bike.

The Alcester Cafe is a twice weekly drop-in centre dedicated to helping support people with dementia and memory loss and their friends, family and carers.

Started by Carole Zambonini two years ago the cafe has grown from attracting just a dozen people in the early days to 150 twice a week these days.

“The cafe needs all the support it can get – it gets no money at all from central goverrnment and relies totally on people giving them funds, yet it provides a vital service,” said Richard, from Haselor.

“Roughly half the people who attend are carers and it’s such a great way for them to get together and have some sort of respite without them being stuck in the house all the time.

“They can talk to other people, swap stories and they get speakers in who can give them valuable information.”

And Richard, who hopes to raise £2,000 from his venture, admits that it’s a subject close to his heart after his wife Alison and her sister Anne started caring for their mother.

“Alison would come back exhausted and it was plain that just having a break is of huge importance,” he said.

On his ride Richard was determined to take the scenic route north and enjoyed pedalling along canal towpaths and country lanes on the road north, average over 70 miles a day.

For more on his trip, visit richardcresswellsculptor.com .

Alcester Dementia Cafe is located in the Jubilee Centre off St Faith’s Road and is open every Tuesday and Friday from 10.30am to 12.30pm and anyone can drop in.

Run by a team of volunteers it has as active programme of events and more information is available on http://www.alcesterdementiacafe.org/ .

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