Shrewsbury School

Cycle South America: Tessa and Felicity are cycling 6,500km for charity

Friday 10 January 2020

Intrepid former pupils Tessa Scott-Bell (MSH 2014-19) and Felicity Hayward (EDH 2017-19) have just embarked on a mammoth challenge to cycle 6,500 km (4,100 miles) up the western side of South America. 

“During the trip from Puerto Montt in Chile to Lima in Peru, we will be ascending over 4000m (four times the height of Ben Nevis) as we cross the Andes mountains. This will be both a physical and cultural challenge, as we will be relying on local people for knowledge about their area and the road conditions.

“The route we are planning to follow will take us up the Pacific coast of the Chilean lake district before crossing the Andes into Northern Argentina. After cycling through vineyards of the Argentinian region of Salta, we plan to cross the border into Bolivia. In Bolivia we will traverse the world’s largest salt flats and face some of our most challenging climbs as we weave through the mining region of Potosi. We intend to enter Peru along the western shore of Lake Titicaca, then head north into the historic Inca region of Cusco. Finally, we will then turn back west and descend into Lima to rejoin the Pacific and complete our journey in late May.”

Felicity is raising money for Epilepsy Research UK because…

“September 2020 is the tenth anniversary of my late mother's (Susan Hayward) death. I am raising money for Epilepsy Research UK in memory of her, as she suffered from the illness in the later stages of her life. As a child growing up with a mother with epilepsy, I am acutely aware of the limitations it places on the sufferer and their family living an ordinary life.

“ERUK fund ground-breaking independent research into the causes, treatment and prevention of epilepsy with the aim of identifying new means to control the condition, improve treatment and quality of life for those with epilepsy and perhaps ultimately to find a cure. They work in five key areas:

• Minimising the side-effects of anti-epileptic drugs
• Prevention of memory loss in temporal lobe epilepsy
• Identifying patients who will benefit from surgical intervention
• The use of immuno-therapy as an effective treatment for some types of seizure
• The recovery of intellectual abilities following surgery in children

“These key areas all resonate closely with me and I would like to help ERUK decrease the limitations epilepsy places on other sufferers and their families.”

Tessa is raising money for Young Minds because...

“The plans for the trip came about in the stressful weeks before the first of our A level exams and also marked the year anniversary of the death of a friend from my previous school in Newcastle, who sadly took his own life. Over the past year my outlook on mental health has changed greatly. Added pressures with exams and social media awareness of oneself and friends’ wellbeing has become more important to me. I would like to use this trip, which is both a physical and mental challenge, to raise money and awareness for the charity Young Minds.

“Young Minds acts as a platform to educate people of all ages about mental health as well as offering support and advice in a range of forms. Their website has a diverse selection of stories and opportunities to speak to people who have had similar experiences, while encouraging self-care, confidence and general wellbeing.

“I want to help Young Minds Trust to expand their work and facilities to help many other young teens.”

Felicity and Tessa have received a Miles Clark Travel Scholarship from Shrewsbury School to help cover the costs of their venture. But they would both be very grateful for support and donations of any kind from the Salopian community for their chosen charities.

Felicity’s fundraising page is: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/felicity-hayward1

Tessa’s fundraising page is: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/cycle-south-america

You can follow their adventures via their website, where they will be posting updates as regularly as they can: https://www.cyclesouthamerica.org/

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