Rowallene Councillors Billy Walker (DUP) and Terry Andrews (SDLP) recently got on their bikes to support local charities.
They have raised a fantastic £12,000 over the past two years for very worthy local causes in a number of ‘challenges’ ranging from a golf contest, eating a mega-SUB, a boxing match, rowing a skiff and on Saturday 10 December they took part in a cycle challenge from Killyleagh to Crossgar back to Downpatrick and Killyleagh.
Councillor Billy Walker said: “I’m delighted to say we raised £2269 for our efforts. We have presented a cheque of £1649 to the MACS homeless project in Downpatrick, and £400 has to go to the Crossgar and District First Responders. We have also presented £200 to the Killyleagh Youth Drop In group.
“It has been a privilege to raise these funds for the charities. Our main charity we supported was MACS as we thought that coming up to Christmas that it would be good to help them enjoy that time of year when there are so many homeless people, especially the young, on our streets.
“The cycle race wasn’t completed by me anyway, as I ended up with severe cramps and could not finish the 17-kilometer route. Terry was the worthy winner as he paced himself better than I did.
“I’d just like to say a special thank you to our main sponsors, the Killyleagh Charity Shop, the AJ Diner in Crossgar, and Savage Lock and Safe. With their help we have well exceeded our target of raising £2000.”
Councillor Terry Andrews added: “We are both very proud to have supported these local groups. Just a couple of hundred pounds makes all the difference between some of them surviving or folding up. These groups all do very valuable work in our community and we just want to recognise their tremendous efforts week in, week out.
“Our next epic challenge will be a great bake off when we put on our aprons for a kitchen contest. We both love our food so this one is close to our hearts! This challenge will be supporting the Kevin Bell Foundation and the Killyleagh Youth Drop In. Then in June we will be holding another golf tournament. Our last one at Bright Castle Golf Club was very successful. And again we will be supporting local charities.
“It’s great to even up the score against Billy. We are the best of friends, but that little competitive edge between us is a winner for the local community and charity groups. This is something we are both very much committed to supporting now and in the future.
“On behalf of Billy and myself we’d just like to thank all our sponsors and everyone who made donations and who helped out.”