LPT patients’ Land’s End to John O’Groats cycle bid

Men receiving care on a specialist adult mental health ward in Leicester teamed up with ward staff to tackle a mammoth 582-mile sponsored bike ride. And they didn’t have to set a foot outside!

The patients on Phoenix ward, Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust’s low-secure male forensic ward, came up with the idea of cycling the equivalent of Land’s End to John O’Groats using an exercise bike. The ride is one of a series of fundraising events they have devised with staff on the ward, at Herschel Prins Centre, on the Glenfield site.

The cycle challenge kicked off on 2 April with individuals ‘doing their bit’ to clock up the miles whenever they were able, and the distances logged on
a giant wall poster. Over the course of nine days they exceeded their target distance, completing a total of 584 miles.

Occupational therapist Alice Burnell, who helped to organise the fund-raising programme, said: “We provide a range of recovery-focused therapeutic activities on the ward but, because of the nature of their mental illness, many of our patients don’t get leave from the ward.

“They enjoy movie nights on the ward and told us they wanted to raise funds for a TV screen and games system so we all got together to come up with suggestions for raising the £1,200 needed. Everyone liked the suggestion of a sponsored bike ride and this is also a good way for them to get exercise too.”

Fund raising continues and this week a bake sale on the main Glenfield Hospital site which raised £332. And later this summer patients will be writing and staging a drama production for friends, family and staff, to boost the total further.

The men will have the opportunity to take part in a series of performance workshops with Leicester’s Kirsty Munro this summer, culminating in two performances in July – one for staff and one for family. Plans are also in hand to follow this up with a garden party at the unit.

Donations can be made online via a dedicated Just Giving fundraising page called Phoenix Fundraiser, as part of the Trust’s Raising Health charity.

1.Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust (LPT) provides community health, mental health
and learning disabilities services for the one million people living in Leicester, Leicestershire
and Rutland. We have a budget in excess of £275 million and employ approximately 5,500
staff. For more information visit: www.leicspart.nhs.uk
2. Raising Health is our registered charity (number 1057361) which raises funds to support
LPT’s excellent care initiatives, equipment and innovations which go above and beyond core
NHS provision, to enhance the experience of our patients, service users and staff.
For further information contact: Sheila Ashton, communications manager for adult mental
health and learning disabilities services Tel: 0116 295 0042, Email: