Going the length of Scotland in Rowan’s memory

Charity cycle by the Rowan Boland Memorial Trust left to right, George Henry, Ronnie Murray, Dougie Welsh, Julian Crum of Border Cycles, Stevie Halls, Alan Brown and Keith Irvine.
Charity cycle by the Rowan Boland Memorial Trust left to right, George Henry, Ronnie Murray, Dougie Welsh, Julian Crum of Border Cycles, Stevie Halls, Alan Brown and Keith Irvine.

A TEAM of Borders cricketers are swapping their bats and pads for lycra shorts as they tackle a 310-mile sponsored cycle run from John O’Groats to Galashiels.

Gala Cricket Club captain Stevie Halls, along with youth coaches Keith Irvine and George Henry, will be joined by former Gala CC stalwart Ronnie Murray, and Hawick CC’s Dougie Welsh and Alan Brown on the week-long journey.

The group are aiming to raise around £3,000 for the Rowan Boland Memorial Trust, set up following the death of the young cricketer at Meigle Park last year at the age of nine.

Last year, the same team pedalled to each Borders cricket club in a day, helping to raise more than £4,000, while the trust in total has raised £23,000 to date to help talented young athletes in the Galashiels area with their chosen sports.

Stevie said: “We did a one-day event last year and were very well supported by the local community and businesses, and raised a significant amount of money.

“We wanted to do another similar fund-raising event, but thought we had to up the ante so that people would continue to support the trust and we decided on this route which is going to test us to the limit.”

Former Gala RFC physio Murray has previously cycled across Australia and from John O’Groats to Land’s End.

He said: “Having done a fair bit of cycling in the past I know what a challenge this is going to be.

“It will be tough, even if the weather is kind, but the main motivation for us is to raise cash in Rowan’s name. I’m sure when the going gets tough we will dig deep so that we can do his memory justice.”

The sextet of cyclists set off on Sunday, September 4, and are due to return to Gala Cricket Club the following Saturday.

The bikers are being supported by Borders Cycles from Hawick, James Dewar of Handyvanself Drive in Galashiels, Hendersons Grass Machinery of Selkirk and Bookers Cash and Carry.

Anyone who would like to make a donation can contact any of the cyclists, trustees or anyone at Gala Cricket Club. Contact details can be found at www.rowanbolandmemorialtrust.co.uk