Duchy team embark on 205 bike ride for Alfie

Team Duchy 10 Plus Alfie taking part in the Ride for Precious Lives
Team Duchy 10 Plus Alfie taking part in the Ride for Precious Lives

A Duchy team of 10 will embark on a challenging bike ride from St Austell to Branstaple in July and hope to raise £10,000 for children’s hospices. 

The team is made up of the members of the Duchy of Cornwall plus family members and Celebrating Poundbury’s Editor Miriam Phillips. 

The Race for Precious Lives ride is raising important funds for Children’s Hospice South West and the team will be riding from hospice to hospice throughout the three-day challenge. To sponsor the team please click here. 

TEAM DETAILS – Team Duchy 10 + Alfie written by Christine Walsh

The name says it all…. Team Duchy 10 plus Alfie Рwhich took us all longer to decide on than it did to take part in the event!

The reason for this ‘moment of madness’ by all of us who have agreed to take part in a 205 mile Bike Ride is easy to explain.

Alfie Ezra Sanders who, whilst only with us for a short time in this life, made such an impact on us all.

Against all odds, Alfie’s family were blessed with his arrival on 15th September 2014.

From this day, his Mum and Dad and his siblings, together with his extended family and their friends, ensured that the life he had was filled with love, kindness, care and hope.

He in turn, gave them an opportunity to love him and experience a total acceptance of the perfect gift that Alfie was.

They say that giving a beautiful present is a way of telling someone he or she is loved. Alfie’s time with everyone became a wonderful gift to everyone around him.

Alfie defied predictions in that he lived for over a year, and the fact that he did was remarkable.

The love and care given to him by family and friends was given in equal measure by the staff of Little Bridge House in Barnstaple, one of a number of Children’s Hospice South West ( CHSW) Hospices across the South West, not only when he was alive but supporting the family through and beyond his death.

As you can now appreciate, saying ‘yes’ when Alfie’s Grandad Keith asked the question ‘Would you like to complete a 205 mile Bike Ride’ was an easy one to answer.

So, on 6th, 7th and 8th July 2018, Team Duchy 10 + Alfie will be keeping each other company as we take part in the CHSW Ride for Precious Lives 205 mile Charity ride.

The ride commences at their St Austell Hospice and finishes on the first day at their Little Bridge hostel in Barnstaple.

The second day sees (by now saddle sore) assembled riders leave Barnstaple to rise up onto Exmoor finishing in Taunton for the second overnight stop before proceeding up through Cheddar Gorge to arrive on the Sunday afternoon attheir third and final hostel near Tyntesfield for a welcome rest and BBQ.

As for the riders, some of you will know one of us, some of you will know a few of us, and a few of you will know all of us! Most of us work for the Duchy of Cornwall, a few of us are married to a member of the Duchy of Cornwall crew and two of us are friends of Duchy of Cornwall team!

None of us are proficient bike riders (and at least 4 of us have actually had to go out and buy a bike so that tells you just how new to it we all are!) but we do however have two things in common‚Ķ‚Ķ. a fierce determination to try and raise the £10,000 target set, together with a hope to just be able to say we finished and survived the course!

So here we are as follows:

Keith & Michele Sanders (the first of two ‘husband and wife’ teams) and Alfie’s grandparents. Whilst their son completed the course in 2017 in double quick time, they are not aiming to follow in his tyre tracks!

David & Christine Walsh: (the second ‘husband and wife’ team) and the first to be swept up in the ‘moment of madness’! They also have the title of ‘grandparents’ so will see just finishing as a major achievement!

Peter James: Former rugby player (over 30 years ago it has to be said, until bad knees ended an illustrious career) who will be quietly competitive on the day!

Ben Murphy: We think he will finish at least a day ahead of the rest of us but Ben is adamant the rumours of his athleticism are wholly unfounded!

Greg Walsh: The youngster of the group who will want to ensure that he reaches the finishing line before his parents! Whilst he still may not be able to beat his Dad at Table Football this could be his chance of glory in the cycling stakes!

Heather Bayston: Being Scottish, Heather is used to climbing hills but not on a bike!

Bob Brady: A keen leisure cyclist who is already well ahead with training ( according to Heather anyway!)

Miriam Phillips: Supermum and Poundbury Champion, she is the second youngest member of the group and very keen to show her two young boys that their mum can do tricks on her bike too!

Please help us raise funds for this wonderful organisation so that they continue to help other families like the Sanders.

Click on the link to see more about the Children’s Hospice South West.

And just one last thought which was spoken to his parents at his funeral:

‘Alfie may not have had “a life” here on earth but you have given him an eternity‚Ķ..”


We are working towards a £10,000 target so we’d be really grateful for sponsorship. You can sponsor us at the Virgin Giving page here.

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