Sophie’s London to Paris pedal in memory of mum

Sophie Barton-Hawkins
Sophie Barton-Hawkins

A cyclist from St Leonards is pedalling from London to Paris in May for charity.

Sophie Barton-Hawkins, 28, of Cloudesley Road, is undertaking the trek in aid of the MS Trust.

Sophie Barton-Hawkins SUS-150122-120124001

Sophie Barton-Hawkins SUS-150122-120124001

It is also in memory of her mother who died of MS in 2004, aged only 45.

Sophie, who moved to 1066 Country from Tewksbury in Gloucestershire three years ago, has already collected more than £1,700 in money through sponsorship and holding various fundraising events.

She said: “I organised a family fun day at Ore Community Centre in November and £485 was raised in total. Two weeks later £300 was collected at a Christmas fair.

“Helenswood Academy donated a total of £381 at its recent mufti day.

“I have had some great prizes donated to sell at charity auctions and fundraising events, including a signed Quentin Blake book on the Jerwood Gallery, free entry to various places, and so many more. Lots of local businesses have donated prizes and I’d like to thank them all.

“I’m aiming to raise around £2,000 for the MS Trust by doing the bike ride from London to Paris.”

Sophie, who is a family key worker for employment charity Tomorrow’s People, will be setting off from Crystal Palace in London on Wednesday, May 20 and the trek to the French capital will take four days.

She added: “I’ll be riding up to 90 miles a day and the last day will be a day of rest. I was meant to start training at the beginning of this month but haven’t because of the ice and wind but I really need to get out and pedal in all weathers.

“I’m aiming to ride my bike as far as I can and as much as possible.”

Sophie said her mum had multiple sclerosis (MS) for seven years before she died, spending her remaining three years in a care home.

MS is a neurological condition which affects around 100,000 people in the UK. It affects the central nervous system. Symptoms can come and go and can vary greatly in terms of severity.

There may be periods of relapse of varying length and severity. Most people are diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 40, but it can affect younger and older people too.

Roughly three times as many women have MS as men and at present, there is no cure for the condition.

Anyone wanting to sponsor Sophie can log on to

The MS Trust is dedicated to making life better for people living with the condition by providing free information to everyone affected by MS and by supporting the health professionals who work with MS. For more information log onto the MS Trust’s website at