Parkinson’s sufferer hits top gear

David Brodie overcame the effects of the debilitating condition to complete a 200 mile sponsored bike ride


David Brodie overcame the effects of Parkinson’s disease to complete a 200 mile cross-country bike ride to raise £60,000 for medical research.

The 63-year-old said it would have been easy for him to have given up on the long-distance route, but he was determined to make it to the finish.

Along with 95 other cyclists he rode a route covering Bristol, Oxford and Cambridge — each of which are centres for Parkinson’s research —with the aim of raising money to help find better treatments for disease.

He said: “As expected, 200 miles in two days with two big hills going into the Cotswolds was a huge challenge for me. 

“And it didn’t help that we seemed to have chosen the weekend with the worst weather.

“Each day, once I was on the bike, there was no way I was going to stop until I had passed the 100 mile mark.”

According to Mr Brodie, a retired chartered accountant who lives in Willesden Green, north-west London, Parkinson’s charities face stiff competition when it comes to fund-raising.

The member of North Western Reform Synagogue said having to cope with the progressive neurological condition had inspired him to help fund research into a cure for sufferers.

“When I was diagnosed, I was told that a cure would come along in the next 15 years. But I have since met others with Parkinson’s who were told that many years ago, and we’re still no closer.

“There isn’t even a treatment that can slow or stop the progression of Parkinson’s — and the drug most used for the condition is more than 50 years old.”

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