Patient Lea raises £5,760 cycling from John Taylor Hospice to London

Lea Nicholls, his wife Emma, and their family have all raised a phenomenal £5,760 for John Taylor Hospice, by cycling 148 miles from the Hospice to London.

Lea is currently a patient at the hospice, receiving treatment for his metastatic kidney cancer, and decided that he wanted to give something back as a thank you for all the care he is receiving.

Initially, Lea thought the ride would be lovely and flat, but later he said: “I was completely wrong! It is definitely the hardest thing I’ve ever done!”

Lea, his wife Emma and their fantastic family who raised a phenomenal £5,760

Lea has taken on other cycling challenges, such as Lands End to John O’Groats, so this is certainly a challenge.

The team consisted of eight riders; Lea and Emma Nicholls, Alfie and George Nicholls, Allan Ball, and Rob, Bailey and Callie Smallman. There were also two family members supporting along the way; Sue Ball and Sally Smallman. A very special thanks goes to DT Industrial Contractors for the loan of their van in returning the bikes.

The challenge took the team four days to finish, as they cycled from Birmingham, through Leamington, Milton Keynes, Hemel Hempstead and finally ending their cycle in Little Venice in the centre of London. The team all celebrated their amazing accomplishment with a meal in High Wycombe.

When talking about the hospice, Emma praised “The amazing emotional support and day to day care Lea receives from John Taylor Hospice. We don’t always want to ring and bother the hospital, and the atmosphere at the hospice is wonderful. It is always there to help Lea, or make him feel more stable when needed.”

Emma’s dad and brother in law planned the route carefully, as the majority of the team were new to cycling long distance, making it a real challenge. When asked what their favourite part of the challenge was, the general consensus was the achievement they all felt when they finished, and the amazing total they had all raised.

The challenge didn’t come without it’s obstacles though, as members fell off bicycles, and there were too many punctures to mention!

With the original target being £500, the team smashed this as they watched the total climb to over £5000. Emma said “There was no way we were giving up!”

Everyone at The Hospice Charity Partnership is so incredibly proud of Lea and the team for taking this challenge on.

When speaking to Lea about why he decided to fundraise, he said: “I wanted to do it to prove you don’t have to give up as soon as you’re told you are ill. I didn’t even think of my illness during this challenge, it was just great to be involved. I couldn’t have done it without my family, and the hospice has been fantastic.”

Emma added: “We cannot thank John Taylor Hospice enough for how they support us. They have helped us with some really difficult conversations, but they’ve made them so much easier than we expected. They are always there for us, and are just amazing.”

If you’re feeling inspired by Lea’s story and want to take on your own fundraising challenge for The Hospice Charity Partnership, please get in touch by emailing

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What our patients think

“The care was second to none”

“At such a heartbreaking and difficult time, the nurses and care assistants knew exactly what to do and to say – we’d have been lost without them. The care they provided for my beautiful wife was second to none and I’ll be forever grateful.”

Roger Perks

“Nothing is too much trouble”

“I can’t thank hospice teams enough. From fitting grab rails in my house and ordering a reclining bed, reviewing of all my medication, providing me with new medical equipment and even helping to organise domestic help for us at home – they’ve covered everything but are always willing to do even more.”

Jackie Bannister

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“The support I get is truly is invaluable and I honestly don’t know where I’d be without them. I’m able to talk openly about my illness and ask for advice and support if I need it. I’ve made some incredible friends and the hospice is a very special place full of laughter and kindness. “

Liz Warren

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