Bolton dad going the extra mile cycling from Greater Manchester to Melbourne
There are many ways to raise money for charity but a father from Bolton is going the extra mile or two, on his bike as he heads to Australia.
Andrew Crompton, who is 57 and an insurance broker, will cycle across three continents, 18 countries and 10 timezones from Greater Manchester to Melbourne.
The businessman who has made a career out of assessing risk is taking on the 8,500 mile trip hoping to raise £500,000 for two charities close to his heart.
He said, "Cycling through the deserts of Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates in 36 degree heat, on miles of miles of straight roads with headwinds, has been the toughest part of the challenge so far.
"The hills in India are also a new challenge. "
"I’m determined to raise as much money as humanly possible for two fantastic charities that I’ve supported for a long time and which are close to my heart, the Carers Trust and the Bolton Lads and Girls Club, which runs programmes for young carers."
Speaking from India, Andrew said he felt he had now 'broken the back of the challenge', but he has had some close shaves along the way.
"I've come off four times on the journey so far, unfortunately in India they have huge speed bumps which can be difficult to spot and I hit one early one morning, which caused a few cuts and bruises but nothing that doesn't mend."
He first learned about the importance of unpaid family carers when a friend became the primary carer for his parents.
Andrew was introduced to Bolton Lads and Girls Club, after he became a mentor in 2000 and has supported them ever since.
“I had no idea of how many deprived kids there are in my home town of Bolton and some of their stories are quite shocking and incredibly moving."
Andrew will spend Christmas in India after setting off from Bolton in July.
He first cycled to London and then through France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, Austria, Hungary, Serbia, Bulgaria, Turkey, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates before taking a flight to Mumbai.
From Chennai, he plans to fly to Bangkok for a three-week ride through Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam.
By February, he will be ready to fly to Cairns in Queensland for a two-month journey down the length of Australia’s eastern coast, arriving in Melbourne in early April.
Andrew's fundraising challenge of a lifetime has already raised more than £35,000, with more than £100,000 in additional pledges, and he is determined to get to Australia and meet his target.