Association Vice President Paul Griffiths is raising money for National Police Memorial Day by cycling to every police HQ in England and Wales.
Covering more than 2200 miles, Paul will be cycling three to four days per month and is inviting members and other colleagues and staff to join him along the route as he aims to raise £1200.
Here’s his latest blog after his journey through Yorkshire on the fourth leg of his national challenge:
Day 10 (06/04) – North Yorkshire Police to West Yorkshire Police
It was good to catch up with some members of the NYP Branch at their Headquarters before I was back in the saddle and riding to WYP Headquarters. The day was glorious and the conditions were perfect for cycling. The route skirted along ‘A’ and ‘B’ roads that were parallel to the A1 – thankfully, avoiding the traffic.
Not long after Walshford my speed started to drag a little and I soon realised that I had picked up another rear flat tyre. This was the first time I had no professionals around me to do the pit stop. I removed the rear wheel and changed the inner tube in a record slow time. With the wheel back on – or so I thought – I continued merrily on my way.
Passing delightful Yorkshire villages and cycling along canal systems, it wasn’t too long before I was entering Wakefield. I arrived at my sat nav destination – only to find I had been sent to another Royal Mail Sorting Office! A quick phonecall for directions and I finally arrived at the front door of WYP HQ. It flung open and the first person to greet me was the smiling face of our own media adviser Lorraine… now, that was a nice surprise!
I was really grateful to Chris Hardern who provided accommodation, food and a few drinks that night.
Headquarters visited: 13/46
Hours cycling today: 5
Miles completed today: 53 miles
Total miles so far: 655
Total time cycling: 66 hours
Day 11 (07/04) – West Yorkshire Police to South Yorkshire Police
Today, I was cycling with Chris Hardern and Damien Miller from our WYP Branch and also Ade Robinson from the Fire Officers’ Association. We started the day with coffee and cakes with DCC John Robins and then bumped into ACC Andy Battle.
We then wandered into the car park to assemble the bikes. As I lifted my rear seat around to position the bike to start, my back wheel fell off! I had clearly not secured it properly since the tyre change and looked on with embarrassment as cycling professionals Ade and Damien sorted it out for me to prevent me from ‘unicycling’ the rest of the journey.
We set off to a stop / start through the city, but before long we started to stretch out into the countryside. Whilst the distance was relatively short – much to the relief of Chris on his BMX the hills were rather testing.
Ade navigated us into the wrong location in Sheffield which caused a bit of Trumpton-related camaraderie. We eventually got to SYP HQ to be greeted by Neil Thomas and a buffet! A nice gesture from SYP Branch which was very much appreciated. It was great to see CC Steve Watson and ACC Rachel Barber whilst there too. My thanks also go to SYP’s media team who wrote a great piece about my journey so far.
Headquarters visited: 14/46
Hours cycling today: 2hrs 30mins
Miles completed today: 24
Total miles so far: 679
Total time cycling: 68 hours 30 minutes
Day 12 (08/04) – South Yorkshire Police to Humberside Police
I was back in the saddle before 6am, lights on and determined to arrive in Hull in a reasonable time so I could drive home. Being a Saturday morning, as I cycled through Sheffield there were more people saying goodnight to each other than good morning!
I took the A road to Rotherham. It was quiet and very cold and by the time I was passing Rotherham my hands were frozen! A quick stop at a Subway for a hot drink soon resolved that problem. I carried on along country roads towards and past Doncaster Race Course. As the sun rose, it was a glorious day, no wind and I was well motivated to keep plugging away at the 68-mile route.
I stopped to fuel up at McDonald’s with a breakfast bap and I was soon making good progress to Scunthorpe. The weather, motivation and terrain were on my side and it felt like the quickest pace of the journey so far. It was not long before I could see the mighty Humber Bridge despite it being miles away. I crossed the Humber and treated myself to an ice cream before finishing the last couple of miles to Humberside HQ.
Headquarters visited: 15/46
Hours cycling today: 5 hours 30 minutes
Miles completed today: 68
Total miles so far: 747
Total time cycling: 74 hours
National Police Memorial Day will be held in Cardiff on Sunday 24th September 2017 in memory of fallen officers.
Paul has so far raised £570 and you can donate to his cause at http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/PaulGriffithsPSAEW
You can follow his journey on Twitter @griffindares and keep checking the website for more blogs as his journey continues.
The road ahead…
Paul will be in touch with Branch Chairs and Secretaries before each section.
Day 13 (22/5) – Humberside Police to Lincolnshire Police (to be joined by Ade Robinson)
Day 14 (23/5) – Lincolnshire Police to Nottinghamshire Police and then Derbyshire Constabulary
Day 15 (2/6) – Derbyshire Constabulary to Staffordshire Police and West Midlands Police (to be joined by Jim Allen and Chris Haward)
Day 16 (3/6) – West Midlands Police to West Mercia Police
Day 17 (18/6) – Isle of Man – TT Route (to be joined by Gavin Thomas)
Day 18 (22/6) – West Mercia Police to Warwickshire Police and Leicestershire Police (to be joined by Simon Cole)
Day 19 (23/6) – Leicestershire Police to Northamptonshire Police to Cambridgeshire Constabulary (to be joined by Kevin Gladwin)
Day 20 (24/6) – Cambridgeshire Constabulary to Norfolk Constabulary
Day 21 (25/6) – Norfolk Constabulary to Suffolk Constabulary
Day 22 (26/6) – Suffolk Constabulary to Essex Police
Day 23 (13/7) – Essex Police to Hertfordshire Constabulary to Bedfordshire Police
Day 24 (14/7) – Bedfordshire Police to Thames Valley Police to Civil Nuclear Constabulary tp Pangbourne
Day 25 (15/7) – Pangbourne to British Transport Police London
Day 26 (31/7) – London: British Transport Police, City of London Police, College of Policing Metropolitan Police Service, NPCC and Home Office to Kent Police (to be joined by Dan Murphy)
Day 27 (1/8) – Kent Police to Sussex Police to PFEW Leatherhead
Day 28 (16/8) – PFEW to Surrey Police to Hampshire Constabulary
Day 29 (17/8) – Hampshire Constabulary to Wiltshire Police
Day 30 (25/8) – Wiltshire Police to Dorset Police
Day 31 (26/8) – Dorset Police to Devon and Cornwall Police (to be joined by Andy Munday and others)
Day 32 (8/9) – Devon and Cornwall Police to Avon and Somerset Police
Day 33 (15/9) – Avon and Somerset Police to Gloucestershire Constabulary
Day 34 (16/9) – Gloucestershire Constabulary to Gwent Police
Day 35 (23/9) – Gwent Police to Cardiff