As churches face major fund-raising challenges, the Norfolk Churches Trust’s Bike Ride on Saturday, September 12 could make a big difference.
In the past 36 years, the annual Bike Ride has raised more than £2.8m – and last year, hundreds of cyclists, walkers and drivers helped to raise £95,037 in sponsorship and donations.
Proceeds are split between the Norfolk Churches Trust and places of worship nominated by individuals taking part.
It is easy to register support – just go to the Trust’s website to get full details.
Bike Rider organiser and north Norfolk farmer Charles Inglis says that there has been keen interest in next month’s event. “It is great opportunity to help churches, the Trust and have a great day out discovering the Norfolk countryside,” he added
The backing of Bishop Graham, who is also a patron of the Trust, has been a major boost to morale. “We’ve asked him to take part and he’s agreed to support the event – and has even been photographed on his bike,” he added.
The Rt Rev Graham Usher, who became Bishop of Norwich in June last year, said: “I am delighted to support the Norfolk Churches Trust Bike Ride and would encourage you to show your support by taking a ride or drive around our beautiful county.”
The Norfolk Churches’ Trust, which supports places of worship of all denominations in the county, makes grants to maintain and conserve these important buildings. It has given more than £75,000 in funding to more than 20 churches already this year. Since it was launched in the 1970s, the charity had made grants of more than £6m for repair, renovation and conservation of churches and chapels.
Mr Inglis said that hundreds of churches will welcome visitors on Saturday, September 12. “Let’s make Bike Ride 2020 really special,” he added.
Bishop Graham added: “Our churches are sacred and special places – treasure troves of memory for generations of people, where they keep encountering the presence of Jesus in these places of prayerful stillness, peace and beauty. They belong to all the community and this is a great opportunity to play your part in their repair and preservation for future generations.
Photo copyright Diocese of Norwich/ Luke W Bryant