Parent to boost school bursary fund with penny-farthing ride

David Fox-Pitt will ride a penny-farthing 175 kilometres in a single day to raise money for Glenalmond College’s bursary fund

A parent is planning to raise money for his children’s school’s bursary fund by cycling a penny-farthing 175 kilometres in a single day.

David Fox-Pitt, father of two pupils at Glenalmond College, will set off from the school at 7am on 8 May and return approximately 13 hours later.

The ride is taking place as part of #Challenge175, a series of sporting challenges aiming to raise £175,000 for bursaries ahead of Glenalmond celebrating its 175th anniversary next year.

“This really is an outstanding school where young people are offered incredible opportunities – including wonderful sports and activities, as well as academic education – giving them an amazing life experience,” said Fox-Pitt, who is also a member of the school’s council.

“Being able to provide bursaries for young people to attend is vitally important and, for those who are able to attend with this support, it will make a massive difference to their lives.”

Fox-Pitt’s penny-farthing will carry him past five Roman forts when he circles the steep hills of the Highlands, as he hopes that gravity and his bicycle’s rudimentary equipment levels – no gears, no suspension, negligible braking – prove the least of his challenges.

“A penny-farthing takes longer to react than an ordinary bicycle and so there is also need for extra care when cycling through towns and villages – even deer and sheep on rural roads can pose a challenge if they emerge suddenly,” he said.

Fox-Pitt decided it would be fitting to sport a kilt, as boys and girls at Glenalmond College wear their kilts on Sunday mornings and on special occasions.

The #Challenge175 campaign has been making strong headway since its launch in late February.

“In just a few weeks we have already raised more than £60,000 for bursaries thanks to the efforts of pupils and staff, current and former, and their families,” said Dr Michael Alderson, head of Glenalmond College.

“The provision of more bursary-funded places will allow us to offer a fantastic education to young people who could not otherwise come to a school like Glenalmond, and the difference that can make is truly life-changing.”


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