Teacher pedals for charity

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A Deeside teacher has celebrated the end of his one-man charity cycle around Scotland by watching highlights of its bigger French version - with an enormous bowl of pasta.

Cycle-mad Graeme Rennie arrived in Peterhead late on Sunday, July 24, after a gruelling 1,300-mile journey between the four compass points of the Scottish mainland. He even missed the end of his beloved Tour de France to complete the challenge, which has already raised over £3,000 for Aberdeen palliative care unit, Roxburghe House.

Graeme, 49, a guidance teacher at Aboyne Academy, was determined to fulfil his challenge after losing his dad, Donald Rennie, to cancer in 2008.

“I feel exhilarated and proud of both myself and the team who supported me,” said Graeme. “Although I was faced with some of the most demanding terrain in Scotland, in some of the worst summer weather conditions ever, my main ailment is the hundreds of midge bites I gained along the way!”

Graeme’s itinerary took him to each of the most northerly, westerly, easterly and southerly points on the Scottish mainland, in 4 stages:

Leg 1: July 16 to 18 July - Keith Insch (Peterhead) to Mull of Galloway Lighthouse, Leg 2: July 18 to 20 - Mull of Galloway to Ardnamurchan Lighthouse, Leg 3: July 20 to 22 - Ardnamurchan to Dunnet Head Lighthouse (Thurso), Leg 4: July 22 to 24 - Dunnet Head returning to Keith Insch.

Graeme, of Auchenblae, is looking forward to using his cherished road bike for leisure purposes only from now on but his hope for a well-deserved rest before school starts back seems unlikely.

“My poor bike needs a complete overhaul and I am told that the garden needs tidying and that all the DIY I promised to do beforehand is still waiting for me,” he joked. “I suspect I’ll soon be wishing I was back on the road!”