A Stoke-on-Trent grandfather, who was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease six years ago, has teamed up with a close friend once again to cycle hundreds of kilometres for charity.

In 2021 Michael Squire, of Meir, cycled around 560km at his home to raise money for Asthma UK and Parkinsons UK. A challenge which was set by friend Kemal Chetitah who himself walked 800km from Saint Jean Pied de port, France to Camino de Compostela, in Spain for the same causes.

Then – the pair raised £2830.00 – and this year the two have joined forces once again to raise money for a charity very close to each of their hearts – Prostate Cancer UK.

Whilst 61-year-old Michael will be aiming to complete – roughly the equivalent of Land’s End to John O Groats – 1320 kilometres – when cycling at home, 66-year-old Kemal will be walking an epic 2040 kilometres in 80 days from Canterbury Cathedral to Rome, across five countries and three mountain ranges.

Michael Squire

“When Kemal told me he had set himself a challenge to raise money for Prostate Cancer UK I wanted to help as much as I could,” said Michael (pictured left and main image (L) with Kemal.)

“This is such an important charity and one which, both I and Kemal are very supportive of. My father-in-law passed away from prostate cancer in his eighties. And my brother-in-law is currently living with the same condition. It is a horrible disease and we want to do what we can to raise as much awareness.”

Kemal, of Northamptonshire, was inspired to take on the challenge for Prostate Cancer UK in honour of his father and brother who have both been diagnosed with prostate cancer.

Kemal said: “I wanted to do something that is physically and mentally challenging as a sign of respect to my family members who have been affected by this terrible disease.

“I am looking forward to taking on the The Via Francigena route and embarking on this next journey to Rome. I cannot thank Michael enough for again supporting me and taking on his own challenge to help raise as much awareness for a charity which has touched both of us.”

Father of three Michael will be aiming to complete around 15-20 kilometres each day on his cycling bike.

He added: “As I was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 2017, I can sometimes find it difficult to do long walks or even cycle on the road, so that is why I will be completing my challenge at home on my cycling bike.

“I will be in regular contact with Kemal throughout his journey and I know he will do just great – like he has done before.”

Michael and Kemal will begin their challenge for Prostate Cancer UK on 16th May until 4th August – when Kemal is expected to arrive in Rome.

To support the friends on their latest charity mission please head to https://www.collectionpot.com/pot/kemal/


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