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Joe Manby Limited company secretary helps charity smash £1m barrier

Keith Hemmings of Joe Manby Limited who has helped Ataxi UK smash its £1m target
Keith Hemmings, company secretary at event services company Joe Manby Limited, joined more than 450 cyclists on 10 September to complete this year’s gruelling 105 km Big Bad Bike Ride around the Yorkshire’s Wolds – bringing the sponsorship amount he has raised for Ataxia UK over the past six years to over £5,000 and helping the total raised by the ride to smash through the £1million barrier.

This year marked the 25th anniversary of the first Big Bad Bike Ride, a sponsored cycle event held to raise funds for Ataxia UK.  The charity supports research into potential cures for Friedreich’s Ataxia, a genetic degenerative neurological disorder affecting children and adults. 

Building on the legacy of previous rides which raised around £960,000, this year’s ride has already raised at least a further £90,000 for the charity, taking the total raised since the first ride in 1991 to more than £1m, which it itself represents a sixth of all research funds invested by Ataxia UK in the same period.  The charity receives no direct government funding and all the funds raised go towards developing treatments for Ataxia.

The bike ride was set up by York businessman Graham Kennedy after discovering that two of his children suffered from the genetic disease, for which there is currently no treatment or cure. Keith said: “It was tough - but it isn't called the BIG BAD BIKE RIDE for nothing!  There’s always a huge sense of satisfaction and achievement at the end of the ride but this year was even more special because reaching the £1m represents such a massive triumph for Graham, his team and all participating riders over the past sixteen rides.”

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