Meet the tuneful charity biker who has Jonathan Ross singing her praises

The broadcaster is one of many Hampstead Garden Suburb locals who have supported Talya Jacobson's 225k cycle in aid of Norwood


Jonathan Ross is among the many Hampstead Garden Suburb residents who have responded generously to the fundraising drive of Talya Jacobson, the 25-year-old daughter of Norwood CEO Dr Beverley Jacobson.

Rain or shine, Ms Jacobson pedals her red trike around the Suburb streets while singing at the top of her voice — Spread A Little Happiness and What A Wonderful World are current favourites.

Ms Jacobson has mild quadriplegic cerebral palsy, a severe visual impairment and learning disabilities. When family members were considering activities for her to relieve the boredom of lockdown, she told them: “I have a good idea — I love riding my trike and I love helping others. So how about doing a sponsored bike ride?”

The result was Talya’s 225 Challenge. Starting on May 22 — or 22/5 — it marks Norwood’s 225th year, will cover a total 225 kilometres and will help towards the charity’s expenditure on PPE (which, coincidentally, cost £225,000 in April alone).

Jonathan Ross had received a flyer about the campaign and tweeted after seeing her out riding: “Can anyone who lives near me in Hampstead Garden Suburb help? We had a leaflet with info about a young girl cycling on her red trike to raise money for her charity. I saw her cycling out in the rain today! I want to donate but can’t find the leaflet. Need info. Thanks.”

Twitter did its job and the broadcaster made a “significant donation”. Ms Jacobson is well on course to her £25,000 target.

Dr Jacobson told the JC: “For most of the past 25 years I have been inspired by the strength and courage of my daughter. No challenge has ever deterred her and she has changed my world.

“Now I will be attempting to run 225k within the next three weeks.”

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