John Brenan is setting off on another fundraising adventure to raise money for injured servicemen and women, cycling 1,800 miles from the top of Scotland to the South of France.

The unstoppable fundraiser is heading out on his 24-day-long bike ride on Sunday, May 19, pedalling for over three weeks from John o’ Groats in Scotland, to reach Nice in France – all in the hopes of raising a brilliant amount of money for the Defence Medical Rehabilitation Centre Benevolent Fund.

John, from Whitehaven, is no stranger to strenuous bike rides, after last year completing a 1,000-mile journey from John o’ Groats to Land’s End, and finishing a 400-mile cycle back in 2017 – but the avid cyclist still wants to do more for wounded soldiers.

Since witnessing the impact the military has had on his friend, and on his daughter, Kim, who is a physio rehab instructor at Headley Court in Epsom, Surrey, John has felt driven to help those injured during their time in service, and Kim is following suit, travelling with her dad for a portion of the route, and leaving him to ride solo from Lyon.

“Seeing people come back with missing limbs and other injuries, and knowing that their careers are over, it’s devastating,” John explained. “That’s why I choose to do these bike rides – it’s a small thing to do my little part in helping injured servicemen and women.”

And the caring cyclist’s fundraisers haven’t gone unnoticed, with staff and patients at the DMRC asking to tag along for sections of John’s journeys. Due to the nature of their injuries, some patients require handbikes for the 50 miles they’re joining John for, showing their dedication to take part, and their appreciation for the work he does.

John spoke of his past experiences with the patients who wish to join him, saying: “People who rode with me last year have told me they’d be honoured to ride with me again, and I just want to tell them ‘no, I’m honoured to ride with you!’”

He continued, describing the motivation for his almost 2,000-mile bike ride: “On the days when I think ‘I just can’t do this any more’, I think of the people in recovery, and the effort and inner strength they use to get better, and I just think to myself ‘so what if my legs hurt, and I’m cold, and wet – get on with it!’”

Before setting off in a couple of weeks, Powerbikes in Whitehaven have serviced his “entirely human powered bike!” for free, and have offered to cover the cost of any repairs his bike needs during his journey, and John couldn’t be more grateful.

“I love doing these bike rides to raise money, because they bring out the absolute best in people - everyone wants to help or be involved, and it’s great”, John said.

The caring action man finished by saying: “I love knowing I’m helping these servicewomen and men in my own little way, and getting to meet so many helpful, supportive and lovely people along the way makes it even better.”

He laughed, and said: “The fact that I get a sore bum is definitely worth it!”

John is completing the journey in memory of his partner of 32 years, Janice Curwen, and has set up a JustGiving page for people to donate to in her honour.

To show your support for John on his cycling feat, and to donate to the wonderful DMRC Benevolent Fund, visit