A couple of sixty-something women taking on the adventure of a lifetime for charity have stepped up a gear as they enter the final countdown to their departure for China.
In just weeks the duo, who call themselves the Beijing Biddies, will drive 8,500 miles from the UK to Beijing to raise £150,000 for Macmillan Cancer Support and Cancer Research UK, passing through some of the world’s most hostile territory.
In the run up to their departure, retirees Kate Sleath (63) of Wetherby and Edwina Sorkin (68) of Newbiggin on Lune, went back to the classroom at Leeds City College to learn a host of new skills – including car mechanics and off-road driving – so they can cope with any eventuality as they travel completely unsupported across the world.
Edwina said: “We have been overwhelmed by the generous support we have received from businesses and individuals in Yorkshire, Cumbria and other parts of the country, particularly this latest donation from RCI Financial Services of the Nissan Pathfinder and Redline Specialist Cars of the Toyota Land Cruiser.
“It was important that the vehicles were mechanical, rather than electronic as many modern cars now are, so that if anything goes wrong while we are abroad, the local mechanics out there will be able to fix it.
“RCI Financial Services were fantastic and, as the captive finance company for Nissan, were able to source a suitable vehicle for us and adapt it to suit our needs.”
The former Wetherby neighbours who became best friends leave on May 1.
They decided to embark upon the challenging journey having witnessed first hand the life-changing impact Macmillan and Cancer Research UK have on cancer patients and their families.
After being featured in the Wetherby News last October the pair have received the Nissan Pathfinder from RCI Financial Services (trading as Nissan Finance) and Redline Specialist Cars have donated a Toyota Land Cruiser.
All proceeds will go to the two charities and to donate visit http://beijingbiddies.co.uk/