A total of 220 miles separates Scotland’s largest city Glasgow from the south Manchester suburb of Wythenshawe and Wesley Hamnett is planning to cycle that full distance to raise money for a number of very worthy causes.
After the devastating loss of his Grandad to a second fight with cancer last year, Wesley knew he wanted to do something to pay a worthy tribute to him and his three other grandparents who are also all at peace, and it was from this that the challenge was born.
It wasn’t always the Manchester-native’s plan of action though.
While the challenge of cycling from Manchester to Glasgow is certainly no easy feat, he had actually embarked upon the much greater task of cycling all the way to Russia instead and this was originally due to place in a few weeks time, but just as the majority of planned events this year have had to be put on hold due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the veteran cyclist regrettably had to postpone the ride until Spring 2021.
This is when he decided to set his sights on something a little more local and has chose to ride from his house in Wythenshawe to the centre of Glasgow.
From his Grandparents’ passings, teamed with a number of other situations he has previously experienced and had to overcome in life, Wesley also identified four charities he is keen to give back to with the funds raised from the ride. The four chosen charities set to benefit are Macmillan Cancer Support, the Christie Charitable Fund, the British Heart Foundation, and the MFT Charity at Wythenshawe Hospital.
He has described each of the charities as being of particular relevance to him and “very much deserving of all the help they can get”.
That’s not all though.
It may be no ‘Manchester to Russia’, but with a little help from the people of Greater Manchester and beyond, we have the chance to make this a ride Wesley truly won’t forget.
Within the next 24 hours or so – before midnight on Tuesday 15th September to be exact – if Wesley manages to amass a total of 10,000 retweets on his tweet and can uplift the donations on his GoFundMe page by an additional £1,000, then he will cycle the full 220 miles from Manchester to Glasgow on his daughter’s little pink bicycle, no matter how long it takes.
How brilliant is this?
Wesley has said that he is “unsure how long the poor little pink bike will last as it isn’t built for an adult”, so if it does break en route, then he will have to walk the rest of the way instead, and he has also said that any major uphill climbs he encounters along the way will also likely have to be walked as well.
We think we can let him off though, right?
If the two targets unfortunately aren’t able to be met by the time set, then not to worry, because he has still pledged to complete the full ride on a road bike instead.
Although we know which outcome we’d much prefer to see, the ride is for a great cause either way, so if you are able to spare a few pounds, then you can find more information and donate to Wesley Hamnett’s fundraiser on his GoFundMe page here.
Don’t forget to retweet his tweet to help him hit that 10,000 retweets target too, and be sure to follow his social media accounts to be kept up to date with the ride as it happens.
From us all here at The Manc – good luck, Wez.
Question Time audience stunned as first-time buyer says mortgage quote DOUBLED
Thursday night’s Question Time audience could be heard audibly gasping after a fellow crowd member revealed that her mortgage quote had doubled followed the recent mini-budget.
Taping in Manchester on 29 September, the current events and politics programme was discussing property when would-be first-time buyer Rabia revealed that her mortgage offer had jumped from an initial amount of 4.5% interest to a shocking 10.5% in just a matter of days.
As you can see in the incredible clip, both the audience and the panel are taken aback at the revelation.
The Greater Manchester resident said she is desperate to know what the government’s plan for mortgages is as following the latest revision, she says she simply cannot afford to put the money down on her first home.
Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer weighed in on the social media reaction, quote tweeting the clip from his party’s own account and stating that “the Tories must get back to Parliament and reverse their kamikaze budget” as the current economic mess is being “paid for by working people”.
To make matters worse, Rabia was given no clarification from her lenders, only that they were pulling her offers. Conservative MP and Minister for Local Government, Faith and Communities, Paul Scully had little information to offer her either, simply stating it is a short-term effect and that the market will stabilise.
Scully was subject to an entirely different reaction from the audience as well after his blind attempts to defend Prime Minister Liz Truss and Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng were met with laughter. Conversely, Richard Bacon was met with applause after he labelled the mini-budget “absurd”.
As if the anti-Tory sentiment wasn’t already at a high, the chancellor’s mini-budget – which saw the corporations, bankers and the generally wealthy benefit ahead of the working class – has seen fresh calls for a general election to be held as soon as possible.
Beyond declaring a so-called £2,500 limit on energy bills (which many have warned isn’t a guaranteed cap), there was seemingly very little in the way of policy that
For those still unclear as to what was announced in the divisive mini-budget, here is a quick summary:
Speaking in a speech at the Labour conference in Liverpool on Tuesday, Starmer said that the government “haven’t just failed to fix the roof, they’ve ripped out the foundations, smashed the windows and now they’ve blown the doors off for good measure.
First images of King Charles III on new coins revealed
The first images of King Charles III‘s likeness on the next 50p coin have been unveiled by the Royal Mint as the nation prepares to transition into a new form of currency.
Revealed on Friday, 30 September, the UK’s official coin maker unveiled the first piece of legal tender. The incoming 50p features Charles’ face in the classic profile position and a new design on the reverse that harks back to the design featured on Queen Elizabeth II‘s 1953 coronation coin.
As you can see, the new coin includes the four quarters of the Royal Arms depicted within a shield and in between each shield is an emblem of the home nations; a rose, a thistle, a shamrock and a leek.
Martin Jennings, Designer of His Majesty King Charles III’s effigy, said in a press release: “It is a privilege to sculpt the first official effigy of His Majesty and to receive his personal approval for the design.
“The portrait was sculpted from a photograph of The King, and was inspired by the iconic effigies that have graced Britain’s coins over the centuries. It is the smallest work I have created, but it is humbling to know it will be seen and held by people around the world for centuries to come.”
Jennings is also responsible for designing the new commemorative £5 coin, customary for marked occasions such as the change over of monarchs.
The limited edition £5 coin will form part of a wider memorial coin collection following the passing of Britain’s longest-reigning monarch.
There is an estimated £4.5 billion worth of existing currency – approximately 27 billion coins of various denominations alone – thought to be in circulation, not to mention things like stamps, meaning that we will likely have to get used to carrying both old and new coins.
This isn’t the only significant change Britons can expect either, as earlier this week the Royal Family revealed the new King’s new cypher which will replace the Queen’s ‘EIIR’ seal across the UK, such as on the gates of Buckingham Palace and on postboxes.