Bikers set to show a softer side this Easter

Biker Andy Parmenter is hoping to put smiles on children's faces this Easter'D15061049a
Biker Andy Parmenter is hoping to put smiles on children's faces this Easter'D15061049a
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BIKERS are gearing up for the third annual Easter egg run in aid of Chestnut Tree House children’s hospice.

Andy Parmenter, also known as ‘Hobbit’, runs West Sussex Bikers and has organised the run which sees motorcycle clubs from across the area come together to deliver Easter eggs to terminally ill children.

This year Andy, 46, of Exford Walk, Durrington, is hoping the convoy will reach 100 bikes in size, after participation sky-rocketed to 76 last year, up from 30 in year one.

He said: “The run was set up because, quite simply, bikers love to ride. A cause like this is a great cause for a ride, and mainly, to give a little happiness to the children, some of whom have very limited lives.

“To see a child smile and the glint in their eyes when they see us all ride in is so overwhelming it has brought people to tears. Time is precious, especially to a child. It’s all worth it to make a child happy even if only for one day.”

The run will start at 11am on Sunday, March 29, at Shoreham Airport, and will take in a 25-mile ride around the county before ending up at the hospice. The bikers will then meet the children and hand over the Easter treats.

The Farmers pub in South Street, Lancing, will hold a reception following the event.

Andy said he was keen to change the public’s perception of bikers. “I find it sad that the general public only see a bad side. I wish the public would open their eyes and see what motorcycle clubs and riders really do.

“It would be nice to have a crowd cheers us on as we go through Arundel between 11.30 and midday.”

Caroline Roberts-Quigley, community fundraiser for Chestnut Tree House, said: “We are so grateful to the West Sussex Bikers for their donation of Easter eggs for Chestnut Tree House.

“The children and young people staying at the hospice love to see the bikes roar up to the House and to have the chance to see the machines up close and meet the bikers.

“They all love the Easter eggs and, as well as eating them, we have Easter egg hunts in the garden and all sorts of fun.”

To support the Easter egg run, visit www.justgiving.com/Hob-Bit