A DEDICATED team of staff members from Andover's Countess of Brecknock Hospice is gearing up for a remarkable fundraising endeavour - an ambitious 50-mile cycle ride through the towns and villages of Test Valley.

The initiative is to raise funds and celebrate the strong partnerships between the hospice and local GP surgeries.

The hospice team's cycling journey will include stops at several surgeries en route, fostering connections with healthcare professionals in Stockbridge, Ludgershall, Sutton Scotney, Whitchurch, and Andover.

The unique initiative reflects the collaborative spirit that exists between the hospice and its medical counterparts.

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Leading the charge is the community palliative nurse specialist, Lorna Cousins, who eagerly anticipates the challenge ahead.

She emphasised the importance of celebrating the hospice's community work and strengthening the bonds with local healthcare providers.

She said: "We have good working relationships with our local GP surgeries. We wanted to celebrate these relationships and thought a bike ride seemed a great way to promote our community work and raise some money at the same time."

Joining Lorna on this cycling odyssey will be the hospice matron, Sarah McGaughey, along with a dedicated team of sisters, a staff nurse, a healthcare assistant, and the community doctor.

Their journey will commence at 7am on Tuesday, September 19, when they will be sent off by Test Valley's mayor Cllr Phil Lashbrook.

He has chosen the Countess of Brecknock Hospice as one of his charities for his mayoral year and expressed his best wishes for the hospice cyclists.

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He said: "I hope their fundraising is very successful. I'm proud to have the Countess of Brecknock Hospice as one of my charities this year."

Meanwhile, back at the hospice, an equally enthusiastic group of staff members, volunteers, and supporters will participate in a relay challenge on an exercise bike.

Their goal is to collectively cover as many miles as possible within the same timeframe as the cycling team's outdoor journey.