ANIMAL keeper Dave Hind is swapping horse power for pedal power next month to support a hospital where his son underwent a life-saving operation.
Dave, from Winnington, his son Neil, 26, who lives in Italy, and Neil’s friend Bobby Beale aim to cycle 1,300 kilometres from Italy to Liverpool.
They plan to saddle up on June 22, and hope to arrive on July 7 at the Royal Liverpool Hospital, where Neil underwent a kidney transplant last year.
Father of three Dave, from Moss Road, who works at the Cotebrook Shire Horse Centre near Tarporley, donated a kidney to his son after he was diagnosed with a rare condition in 2010.
Neil underwent the transplant operation after his condition worsened, has made a full recovery, and he and Dave have decided to thank the Royal Liverpool Hospital by raising as much as they can with their cycling marathon, which will take them over the Alps.
Neil is a teaching assistant at the English International School in Padova, where his fiancee Nicola Murie is a teacher, and the couple plan to return to Britain in August to settle.
Dave is being backed by the Cotebrook Centre, which is seeking support for the event from its suppliers and contacts and has a collection point for donations.
“We’re really proud of Dave and Neil, and wish them well on their trip,” said centre owner Janet King.
“Dave has been with us for more than 10 years, is a very popular figure with our visitors and an invaluable member of staff.
“Amazingly he only had nine weeks off after the operation, and it’s only 14 months ago he had the operation, so for him to go on a trip like this so soon is a fantastic effort.
“We are looking forward to seeing how much Dave, Neil and Bobby raise for the hospital, and have a collection box at the centre where customers can contribute too.”
The cycling trio have raised £836 towards their £1,000 target, and to support them visit justgiving.com/Neil-Bobby.
The fundraiser is being supported by Sentinel Performance Solutions and Darts of Chester.