TWELVE cyclists from Southern Water took part in an epic cycle across the South to raise money for charity.

Staff from the company’s operations team raised £4,000 for the Hampshire Asbestos Support and Awareness Group (HASAG) by riding from Otterbourne to Bristol in one day.

Despite a puncture, a minor fall and a wrong turn which added 10 miles to the 80-mile trip the riders reached the finish line in just under eight hours.

Distribution manager Glen Stock, who organised the bike ride, said the cause meant a lot to him and his colleagues as each of them had friends or relatives who had been affected by the disease.

“The ride was tough but absolutely delightful and we thoroughly enjoyed it, even though we ended up doing nearer 90 miles because we took a wrong turn,” Glen said. “We all trained for it and that really paid dividends. Now we’re thinking of doing London to Paris while we’re all still fit.”

Kevin Buck, who co-ordinates Southern Water’s charity activities, said: “We’re very pleased to support this cause, particularly as it is relevant to our industry, and glad that our enthusiastic cyclists chose to use their volunteer days so well. It was a great effort by them – reflected in the tremendous amount of cash they raised.”

Nearly £3,000 was raised in sponsorship with a £1,000 boost from Southern Water.