Charity cyclists are set to go to great lengths this weekend to help a severely disabled Doncaster youngster.
Teams of bikers will take part in a two-day cycle marathon between Doncaster and Peterborough to collect cash for William Moreland, who will undergo a pioneering operation in the USA later this year to help him walk for the first time.
William, aged four, of Balby, needs to raise £100,000 for the operation called selective dorsal rhizotomy.
At the moment he is unable to walk or care for himself and has to use a wheelchair, after being born with cerebral palsy quadriplegia and periventricular leukomalacia.
Staff at Great Northern Great Eastern and Network Rail were so moved by his plight they organised the Cyclo Sportive Cycle4William event to boost his appeal.
The sponsored event will take place along the rural route of the East Coast Main Line landscape, between Doncaster and Peterborough, on Saturday and Sunday.
Francesca Fisher, GNGE co-ordinator and Cyclo Supportive organiser, said: “Here at GNGE, we decided if there was anything we could do we would have to try it.
“We feel as though we would be able to give him the opportunity to have a more independent future.
“It’s easy to take for granted how easy it is for anyone to get up from our chairs and go and do something with ease.
“William’s whole life can change in an instant with a life changing operation in the USA.
“With the public’s support we can make a dream come true and we are incredibly grateful to everyone who has already helped William but this boy needs more to get to the vital funds needed to fly him to America.”
The weekend event is the latest in a long line of fundraising events for William, of Newbolt Road.
Mum Michelle Gale originally set an appeal target of £70,000 to fund the op in St Louis this autumn, but has now extended the total to £100,000 to help pay for William’s rehabilitation in the months after his operation.
Francesca added: “It would make the world of difference to William, and it too would make his mother Michelle very happy to see the difference made to William’s life.
“We just hope others will take part in the Cyclo Sportive or give money to such a beautiful little boy who deserves a chance to walk for the first ever time.”
For more details about this weekend’s event, the route in detail and how to sign up, visit firstname.lastname@example.org