A young father from Breage is to cycle from John O’Groats to Lands End in six days in memory of his wife who died of a brain tumour.

This month Charlie Baigler will take on the challenge of cycling the full length of the country in memory of his wife Alex.

Alex, a former Truro High School pupil, was just 43 years old when she was diagnosed in 2017. Glioblastoma is the most aggressive form of malignant brain tumour, it has no cure and the typical prognosis is 12 months.

Despite trying every treatment available, including radiotherapy, chemotherapy, brain surgery and numerous alternative therapies, even regularly travelling to Germany for immunotherapy and dendritic cell therapy, Alex died 15 months later - leaving Charlie to bring up their two young children, Molly, now ten, and George, aged six.

Falmouth Packet:

Alex with Molly and George

Charlie said: "Every part of this disease is dreadful for every member of the family, the diagnosis, the operations, the brutal treatments and their debilitating side-effects, trying to find hope, trying to rationalise everything and explain to your children mummy is never coming home again.

"I’m doing this ride to try and raise some money in the hope of finding a cure, or at the very least, an effective treatment for Glioblastoma or any other brain tumour.”

Charlie won’t be taking on the challenge alone - Honor and Reuben Morrison will be riding in memory of their dad, Rory Morrison, the much admired BBC Radio 4 newsreader who died in 2013 of a rare blood cancer when they were only 15 and 12 years old.

Falmouth Packet:

Rory with Honor and Reuben

His widow Nikki was Alex’s cousin: “Alex’s children were just seven and three when she died, about the same age as my two were when Rory was diagnosed, it’s an awful thing to have in common.

"Rory was going through his second stem cell transplant when he died, he too endured years of gruelling treatments, he wanted so much to be around to see them grow up.

“Traumatic death tears some families apart but we are working hard to make sure that it brings us together, we want Alex’s children to grow up knowing her family, and Ride 4 Alex and Rory (R4AR) is part of that.”

They will be raising money for three charities that are working to find cures: Headcase, The Brain Tumour Charity and The Rory Morrison WMUK Registry.

Nikki said: “We lost our loved ones to cancers that are woefully under-funded. Headcase says that brain tumours receive just 1.4 per cent of the total cancer spend and survival rates have hardly improved in the past forty years.

"The cancer that killed Rory, Waldenstrom’s Macroglobulinaemia, is so rare that people don’t know how to say it let alone cure it.

"The Rory Morrison WMUK Registry was set up to give clinicians real-world data that will help in the search for treatments and cures but relies solely on charitable donations.”

In total 13 riders, including cousins, uncles, aunts and friends will complete #R4AR which will take place from August 17-28, with Charlie aiming to complete it in just six days.

To donate, click here.