The Isle of Man Steam Packet Company is supporting three old school friends who will cycle the 170-mile ‘Way of the Roses’ to raise funds for three local charities.
Damien O’Toole, Mark Harvey and Graham Lunn were in the same year at St Ninian’s High School, Damien is chief accountant with the Steam Packet Company, while Mark works at Grant Thornton in Douglas, with Graham now based in London. The friends will team up to complete the coast-to-coast challenge in just two days in June, setting off from Morecambe in Lancashire and finishing in Bridlington in Yorkshire.
The charities to benefit will be Stroke Association (IOM), Isle of Man Live at Home and Crossroads Care.
Damien explained: ‘Last year, my mum suffered a stroke. Thankfully, she came through it, but the stroke has left her unable to walk and with complete disability down her left side.
‘Stroke is the leading cause of severe disability in the British Isles. It has robbed her of the simple pleasures she holds most dear – playing with her grandchildren, baking and gardening. Dad, a retired “Steamie” with over 25 years’ service, is her principle carer. My wife and I, and a few special friends, try to do as much as we can to help, but we are so grateful to the Stroke Foundation, Crossroads Care and the Isle of Man Live at Home Scheme for the essential support they provide us – and so many other families.
‘I wanted to do something to raise much-needed funds for the three charities as a thank you for their fantastic support. So, I roped in two of my oldest friends, Mark and Graham, and we settled on the challenge of cycling The Way of the Roses in just two days. We have had some great support so far and hope to raise much more by the time we set off for Morecambe.’
Steam Packet Company Chief Executive Mark Woodward said: ‘We were keen to support Damien, Mark and Graham as they look to raise essential funds for these three very worthy charities, who do so much for those in need of support and their carers.’
To support the Way of the Roses trip visit: www.justgiving.com/teams/wayofthemanxroses