Riders plan epic trip to raise money for Russian orphans

A POLICEMAN and his newly retired colleague are preparing to motorcycle to Russia to raise money for orphans.

Pc Simon Hall, who is based in Huddersfield, and former constable Dudley Martin are joining nine others who are journeying across Europe to Moscow and back over 16 days from June 1.

The riders will set off from the Isle of Wight, where the charity is based, and cover about 4,000 miles in total.

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It will take them through Holland, Germany, Poland, Lithuania, Latvia and finally into Russia.

Simon, 46, who has been involved with the charity Love Russia for about eight years, said: “This is something close to my heart having been out there and seen some of the horrible conditions.

“If you are an orphan in Russia, you are definitely a second-class citizen and severely disadvantaged.”

The ride aims to raise money for Love Russia’s Genesis Project, which supports orphanage leavers at 16 years old through further education and training to help them find work.

In Russia, many orphans become involved in crime but almost all those involved in the Genesis Project find work and integrate into society.

Last year the project helped 94 young people but the numbers needing support is rising. The riders are aiming to raise £2,000 each for the charity. They have already had to cover the £1,500 in expenses themselves.

Dudley, 52, a biker for 35 years and an advanced bike instructor, jumped at the chance when Simon asked him to join the challenge.

He said: “It certainly will be an epic ride. I was a police biker for eight years but I have never done anything like this before.

“The money we raise will have a great impact on the lives of the orphaned children.”

The pair are hoping that local people across the county, along with friends and colleagues will help them out with donations and if anyone has contacts with motorcycle dealerships, they would welcome some bike preparation.

To sponsor the riders go to www.justgiving.com/simon-dudley For more information go to www.loverussia.org

Follow the ride: www.loverussia.org/rideforrussia