A BASINGSTOKE fitness instructor will take to the saddle on Thursday to pull in the pounds for a good cause.

Richard Opperman, who is a fitness instructor at the Basingstoke Sports Centre, will be cycling from Lands End, in Cornwall to John O’ Groats, in Scotland to raise money for Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research and Ehlers-Danlos Support UK.

The 45 year-old, of Alencon Link, decided to raise money for the two charities as family members have passed away from Leukaemia and a friend of his has recently been diagnosed with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome.

Ehlers-Danlos syndrome is a connective tissue condition which can cause stretchy skin and fragile skin tissue as well as increased movement in joints.

Richard told The Gazette: “I have always enjoyed fitness. I have been doing a lot of cycling since January and at the end of last year.

“I am trying to create more awareness so more can be done to done to fix joints and connective tissue for people who suffer with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome. I enjoy a challenge so if I can create awareness to help others, it makes me happy.”