Skip to navigation | Skip to main content | Skip to footer
Search the University of Manchester siteSearch Menu StaffNet
Search type

Frank's year-long charity cycling challenge

12 Dec 2016

During 2016, Frank Manning from Jodrell Bank has cycled a total of 12,000 miles and attained a cumulative ascent of one million feet - all three weeks ahead of schedule

Frank is raising money for Make-a-Wish Foundation UK, a brilliant charity which grants magical ‘wishes’ to enrich the lives of children and young people fighting serious and life-threatening conditions.

To put this into perspective, he had to cycle an average distance of 33 miles a day coupled with an average 2,700 feet of climbing a day. While, individually, these are not very amazing daily rides, he had to face up to the challenge of keeping up that average up over 365 days. During this time, Frank also worked full-time at Jodrell Bank, where he is Electrical Supervisor, and has two teenage children. The challenge had to fit in around work, holidays and family time. Several times this year, he has ridden through the night to pull the mileage and ascent back on track.

Over the past twelve months, he's ridden the equivalent of the distance from the North Pole to the South Pole, but with the added equivalent of ascending Everest 34.5 times … from sea level.

Friends have regularly joined him and helped along the way, most notably local heroes Andrew Doorbar, Simon Sagar, Martyn Winkle, Matthew Stubbs, David Farrington, David Bayes and Adam Chevin, to name but a few.

Through the year so far, besides his daily commutes of typically 40-50 miles round trip, Frank has done 14 rides of over 100 miles, a few of 150–200 miles, and one 263 mile with 33,000 feet (10,000 metres) of climbing. Along the way, he's suffered a few weeks of Achilles problems, been knocked down by a psychotic van driver (relatively unhurt, but very expensive bike destroyed), made new friends, discovered countless hidden gems within the Peak District lanes and villages, explored the Lake District and participated in sportives and hill-climb time-trials (never worrying any leader-boards though!).

All Frank's rides are recorded with a pair of GPS tracking devices which record where and when I’ve ridden, speed, distance, cumulative altitude gain (barometric ride profile), and heart-rate. Each ride is up-loaded to a sports social media site called Strava for public analysis.

Frank said: "If you’ve never heard of Make-a-Wish, please do check out this charity. If you’ve got healthy, happy kids, a terrible two year old, or stroppy teenagers, you are so very lucky! Some kids only know hospital wards, operations, and bleak futures. A small donation can make so much difference to their lives.

"My target is to raise £1,000. I'm not far off, so any donations large or small will be really appreciated."


If you'd like to donate directly to the charity, please visit Frank's JustGiving page: