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Crosby gym owner joins London to Amsterdam cycle for Alder Hey and his little boy Oscar 

3 weeks ago

Crosby gym owner joins London to Amsterdam cycle for Alder Hey and his little boy Oscar 
Kevin with friend Nick McBrien who is also doing the cycle challenge for Alder Hey

Over the last few years gym owner Kevin Jones has helped raise thousands of pounds for Alder Hey – but the birth of his youngest son Oscar has made any challenges for the famous children’s hospital more personal and important than ever.

Oscar, who’s 19 months old, was born with a rare genetic syndrome that’s led to a number of operations as well as regular tests and check-ups at Alder Hey Children’s hospital.

So when Kevin joins 96 other cyclists on a London to Amsterdam bike ride in aid of six major children’s charities including Alder Hey tomorrow, every turn of his pedal will be for each one of them and, especially, for Oscar.

“I’ve got a running relationship with Alder Hey and I’ve always enjoyed doing things to raise money for such a fantastic charity,” says Kevin, 38, who owns and runs Alive Fitness in Crosby with wife Rachel. “With other people, I’ve done the Coniston triathlon challenge and Snowdon in the Dark, and I’ve run the London Marathon with a friend who dressed as Alder Hey’s mascot, Oli.

Kevin and family on a recent Disney trip
Kevin and family on a recent Disney trip

“I have always felt that if you’re in a position to do something and help organisations like Alder Hey, then you should.”

But he adds: “It’s ironic that after so many years of raising money for Alder Hey, we are now seeing first-hand the work they do. Over the last year and a half Rachel and I have been to the hospital far more often than anyone would like to, but it is always a great experience and that is a huge inspiration now for anything I do.

“I have a chance to raise money for Alder Hey and, with the Liverpool to Amsterdam bike ride, other children’s charities too. And after having Oscar, I have a chance to give something back.”

Kevin is one of 97 cyclists representing six of the UK’s largest children’s hospital charities who are coming together for a second time with a target to raise more than £160,000.

Alder Hey Children’s Charity, Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity (GOSH Charity), Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity, The Grand Appeal – the Bristol Children’s Hospital Charity, Sheffield Children’s Hospital Charity and Glasgow Children’s Hospital Charity first got together in 2022 to cycle from London to Paris, smashing their initial target by raising £160,000 for their hospitals.

They’re hoping to do even better with this year’s London to Amsterdam cycle challenge, to ensure that each of the charities can continue to provide life-changing treatments in the NHS for children and young people across the UK. The money helps fund specialist medical equipment, as well as a range of activities and projects to enhance and improve the lives of children and young people, including hi-tech distraction equipment proven to reduce pain and vital research to help find cures and better treatments.

Kevin Jones
Kevin Jones

Before he agreed to take part in this year’s mammoth adventure, which will take the cyclists across four countries in four days and clock up 335 miles, Kevin didn’t even have a bike!

“So I bought a bike, got on it the next day, and I’ve grown to love it,” says Kevin, who’s also dad to four-year-old Alfie. And he smiles: “I have become everything I hoped I wouldn’t in terms of a middle-aged man in Lycra. But I got the bike, then the shoes, and you just keep adding a piece of kit that you ‘need’.

“In training I have done 50-mile rides and the odd 65 and 70-mile ride, and it’s been amazing, going out on beautiful mornings and seeing some incredible sights.

“The London to Amsterdam challenge will be difficult, but while I’m dreading the first day from Croydon to Dover when we’ll face a steep elevation of 5,000ft over 86 miles, as well as a time challenge – if we don’t make Dover in time for the 6pm ferry it will be going without us! – I’m looking forward to it too.

“It’s the chance to do something I’ll probably never be able to do again, and travel through some beautiful countryside, so I’m determined not to keep looking down at my handlebars but to take it all in.”

Kevin has already reached the necessary target of £2,100 through various fundraising events, and he’s set up a JustGiving account hoping to raise as much more as he possibly can.

Kevin and family on a recent Disney tripKevin and family on a recent Disney trip
Kevin and family on a recent Disney trip

And if the going gets tough at any point along the route, he only has to think of Oscar to keep one foot going round in front of the other.

“Since Oscar was born he’s spent quite a lot of time in the high dependency unit at Alder Hey,” he explains. “He has had operations because he has talipes, or club foot, and the syndrome can lead to development issues and problems with organs among many other things. There are varying degrees of severity with each person and with Oscar we are still finding out.

“He will need ongoing care and Alder Hey have been fantastic.

“I put myself in the mindset that anything I can do for them and anything that comes my way I’ll say yes to.

“The London to Amsterdam cycle ride is not just for Oscar but all the other children and parents who need Alder Hey, and for all the other amazing children’s charities.

“That’s the inspiration and that’s why I’m doing it.”

To support Kevin, go to his JustGiving Page here.

For more info on Alder Hey click here.

For the latest news in Liverpool click here.



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