Josh and his gran plan marathon cycle

IT'S not uncommon for families to take trips together over the summer but for one Duns boy and his grandma there won't be much chance to relax when they go on theirs!

By The Newsroom
Wednesday, 14th July 2010, 11:29 am
Updated Wednesday, 14th July 2010, 11:29 am

Josh Herbert and his gran, Jan Booth, from Gordon, will be spending three weeks in the saddle when they cycle from John o' Groats to Lands End, to raise money for Duns Swimming Club.

Although 15 year old Josh no longer swims competitively for the club, he is still very much involved and his sister Ailie is a member.

It was Jan who shocked everyone by telling them she was going to take on the challenging cycle and after giving it some thought Josh decided to keep her company along the way.

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To get from A to B the duo have to pedal 875 miles and are planning to stop over and rest their heads at various youth hostels and B&Bs along the way. But despite the mammoth task which awaits him and his gran when they set off on July 27, Josh said he is looking forward to it.

"I've only really become a keen cyclist in the past couple of years," he said.

"Like everyone else I was a bit surprised when my gran said she wanted to cycle from John o' Groats to Lands End but thought I'd join her and give her some moral support.

"My grandad keeps asking me if I still want to go ahead with it though!"

Like the various other charity cyclists we've featured in 'The Berwickshire News', Josh said the local terrain has proved useful when

it's come to preparing himself for his impending mission.

"I've been doing a few cycles for my training," he continued.

"I've cycled down to Chirnside and back and then to my gran's in Gordon.

"The roads in the area are quite good for training as there are quite a few hilly bits so it's quite challenging."

Josh is hoping that his local cycles will stand him in good stead for what lies ahead and said it was encouraging to know that his gran will be by his side in the unlikely event of anything going wrong.

"I have got a few nerves," he admitted.

"But I think it will be reassuring to have my gran with me if I need anything. And home's only a phone call away.

"I just want to get on with it now; I've never been to most of the places on the route so it'll be good to do some sight-seeing while I'm on my bike."

Josh's mum said she was shocked that both he and Jan, who is currently on holiday getting some last minute relaxation in, had decided to take on the trek and when asked if it had spurred her on to do something similar she said: "No way, I'm not that silly!

She added: "I was really surprised, firstly when Jan said said she was going to do it and then probably even more when Josh said he was going to join her.

"It's a massive thing for anyone to do though and I'm really proud."

With maps ready and routes marked out all that's left for Josh to do is try and raise as much money as possible for the Swimming Club.

He's had a good response so far and anyone who wants to show their support should ring (01361) 884670.