Paul Riddell undertook a 450km route from the most easterly point in the Scottish mainland to the most westerly, taking in some of Scotland’s most stunning scenery. The gruelling challenge was set in aid of two charities; Brain Health Scotland (supported and hosted by Alzheimer Scotland) and the Children and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS).
The 50-year-old father-of-two and businessman who lives in Inverurie, Aberdeenshire, shared his inspiration for setting up the challenge:
“Like many others, my family has been affected in recent years by child mental ill-health and adult dementia. A close relative is living with vascular dementia. At times, dealing with the consequences of these medical conditions is, frankly, extremely difficult..
One of my coping mechanisms is exercise and cycling in particular. So, I decided to undertake the challenge of riding from the most easterly point in the Scottish mainland to the most westerly. The purpose of the ride was to raise funds for Children and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS), which is part of the NHS, and Brain Health Scotland (BHS), which is hosted and supported by Alzheimer Scotland and seeks to inspire and empower people to protect their brain health and reduce their risk of diseases that lead to dementia.”
Developed in partnership with Alzheimer Scotland, and funded by the Scottish Government, Brain Health Scotland mission is to inspire and empower everyone in Scotland to protect their brain health and reduce their risk of diseases that lead to dementia. Lifestyle has a profound impact on our brain health. If we eat, exercise and sleep well we can help keep our brains healthy and fuelled with oxygen and nutrients. No matter our age, we need to stimulate our brains by being with people and learning new skills. And it is crucial we manage stress to stay as calm as possible at home and work.
We now understand a great deal more about what impacts our brain health than we did even ten years ago, and Brain Health Scotland is working to ensure this growing evidence base is applied in healthcare and public health campaigns.
With hopes to raise £10,000, Paul documented his journey to keep friends, family and supporters informed whilst also encouraging the public to show support and get involved,
“I made a short film about the challenge in the hope of inspiring others, if not to take on a major charity fundraising effort, then to get out and do some exercise. It is incredibly beneficial for your physical and mental health, especially as you get older. And, as I have found, you’ll be surprised what you can achieve.”
Paul has successfully fundraised over £3,680 to date and completed his cycle on 3rd – 4th June, which coincided with Dementia Awareness Week (30th May- 5th June).
You can help Paul reach his £10,000 target by sharing his fundraising page or donating. Click here to visit Paul’s page.