Students at The Wellington Academy in Tidworth swapped the classroom for two coastlines as they took part in a 100-mile cycling challenge to raise money for their partner school in Kenya.

Ten students from year nine and ten joined three members of staff to complete the Devon Coast to Coast Cycle Challenge in 42 hours. The feat took them from the beach at Ilfracombe in North Devon along one of the finest long-distance routes on the national cycle network to their final destination near the iconic Smeaton Tower lighthouse in Plymouth.

The Wellington Academy’s deputy headteacher, Rob Wood, who organised the challenge, said he and his colleagues are enormously proud of the students’ efforts.

“These students had only ever cycled locally until now, so they showed amazing determination and resilience taking on a challenge like this,” said Mr Wood.

SEE ALSO: Dance school raises £11,000 for Andover children's charity with show in memory of late principal

“The route is absolutely beautiful in terms of views, with the superb estuaries of North Devon and the spectacular climbs and vistas across Dartmoor, but if you’re not a seasoned cyclist it’s also a very tough route too.

“Despite this, the students managed to cover 52 miles on the first full day and completed the 100-mile route within 42 hours. The second day was particularly demanding, with a steep climb out of Oakhampton, and it certainly stretched all our legs and lungs, but they carried on regardless. I think what drove them was the fact that every turn of the pedals was not only bringing them closer to their destination but was also ensuring that vital funds were being raised for our partner school in Kenya.”

The challenge ended with the students putting their bikes in the sea at Plymouth harbour. The Devon Coast to Coast is only considered completed when a cyclist starts off in the sea in North Devon and ends in the sea in South Devon.

Student Mason Clarkson-Kearsley, 15, who raised £140 in sponsorship said: “I chose to do the coast-to-coast ride as an exciting challenge to raise money for the children in Kenya, so they can have the lives they deserve.

“The ride was a fun experience - there were a lot of beautiful views and we made many memories on the way that we’ll never forget. It was definitely a very physical challenge, but it was 100 per cent worth it.”

Message from the editor

Thank you for reading this story. We really appreciate your support.

Please help us to continue bringing you all the trusted news from your area by sharing this story or by following our Facebook page.