Over the last couple of days FE Week has been following the Top2Toe charity fundraiser lead by Dave ‘Blind Dave’ Heeley and South Birmingham College Principal Mike Hopkins.
Mike and Dave are currently riding on a tandem bicycle as part of a gruelling 10 day charity ride, completing a total of 1,000 miles from John O’Groats to Land’s End.
‘Blind Dave’ is hoping to raise £100,000 for Macmillan Cancer Support by completing a marathon each morning before continuing on the tandem with Mike.
FE Week watched the pair arrive in Birmingham on Monday evening to widespread cheer and applause. The tandem, joined by a number of other cyclists, were greeted in front of the Birmingham Town Hall by a variety of well wishers, journalists and members of the support team.
We had the chance to interview Mike Hopkins and Dave Heeley during the mayoral reception held in the Town Hall later that evening. The lively pair spared a moment from the celebrations in order to speak to us about their progress and how they had been coping so far. The video interview can be seen in the YouTube player below (also available in HD) and identifies how close they are to reaching the £100,000 fundraising target.
Mike, Dave and rest of the team regrouped the following morning (Tuesday) at 5:30am in front of the Town Hall. Among the supporters and fellow fundraisers were six members of staff from South Birmingham College, who were planning to run the marathon and raise additional money for Macmillan Cancer Support.
FE Week was able to interview some of these individuals and follow the marathon as it moved out of the city. We travelled with the group via bicycle, documenting the experiences of the runners and cyclists throughout the day. This included a moving interview with Mike Hopkins and an interview with Ben Hawkins, a media production student from South Birmingham College.
We left the group during a quick pitstop on the motorway. Our video report can be seen below (also available in HD), including exclusive photographs shot during the early morning preparation.
The challenge is taking place between 10-19 August and you can continue to follow Mike and Dave’s progress via these links: