Arran Belles complete 2,692 miles for Doddie

The Belles did enjoy some sunshine during their January challenge.

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The Arran Belles, a ladies’ cycling and socialising group on Arran, have contributed 2,692 miles to the Doddie Active Inter District (AID) Challenge which has helped to raise more than one million pounds for the My Name’5 Doddie Foundation.

The challenge involved people and organisations making a donation to the motor neurone disease research and grant charity, and then joining a district group with any exercise logged during the month of January going towards the district’s total.

The Arran Belles, plus a couple of friends, took part in the challenge in one of the wettest months of the year.

Calling themselves the Doddie Gumpers, they braved the Arran storms, cycling, climbing, dog walking, golfing, and racked up an impressive 2,692 miles for their district team.

There were five teams in total, and although the Belles were part of the team with the lowest numbers, they were the second most generous.

A spokesperson from the Arran Belles said: ‘Thanks to others who supported the cause and congratulations to all of the Arran Belles and their friends, brilliant mileage, brilliant contribution.’

The Doddie AID Challenge, the brainchild of Rob Wainwright, was well supported with more than 27,000 people participating and helping to raise over one million pounds for motor neurone disease research.

It also received celebrity endorsement from Sir Chris Hoy, Gerard Butler, Lorraine Kelly and Ewan McGregor and there were even messages of encouragement from Nicola Sturgeon and Boris Johnson.

The My Name’5 Doddie Foundation is named after George Wilson ‘Doddie’ Weir, OBE, the former Scottish rugby union player who made 61 international appearances for the Scotland national team.

Doddie was diagnosed with motor neurone disease in 2017 and since then has helped to raise in excess of £7 million to aid research into the causes of motor neurone disease and investigate potential cures.

Through the My Name’5 Doddie Foundation, the charity also makes grants to individuals suffering from motor neurone disease, to enable them to live as fulfilled a life as possible.

All competitors who took part in the challenge received a tartan Doddie buff which the Arran Belles took on a tour with them and photographed at various locations around the island.

All activities were made individually, or in small socially distanced groups, following Covid guidelines.