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Murray Edwards College
University of Cambridge

Lauren Beales: Coast to Coast Cycle

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    05 Jan
    Lauren stands smiling with her bike overlooking the moor near Consett. She is wearing a purple waterproof coat and bike helmet. There is bright sunshine and few clouds in the sky.

    I used my Gateway Challenges funding to complete the coast to coast cycle route (Whitehaven to Tynemouth) at the end of the summer vacation. The cycle took me three days, and I stayed for two nights in B&B’s along the route. 

    I started my cycle by driving to the Lake District to begin the route at Whitehaven. Having completed some longer bike rides in preparation, I had a rough idea of the time it would take me to cycle the 140 mile route, and managed to complete around 47 miles each day. The second day was the most challenging, feeling the cycling of the day before and knowing I still had so far to go - the hills didn’t help either! The picture attached is taken by my mum, who met me at top of the last major hill near Consett - it was pretty much all downhill from here, with around 25 miles left to go.  

    Overall, I really enjoyed the experience, challenging myself to complete something I have always wanted to do. I learned to push myself and persevere even when I felt like stopping, and even how to fix a puncture! I am extremely grateful to the Murray Edwards Gateway Programme for making this challenge possible, and ensuring Murray Edwards students thrive not just in an academic environment, but are supported in pursuing their broader interests.  

    Lauren Beales 
    Undergraduate student, Modern and Medieval Languages