TWO Hampshire men have completed a 412-mile bike ride in aid of the Alzheimer’s Society.

Mike Foulds and Ed Matthews from North Baddesley and Southampton cycled from St Davids in Pembrokeshire to Lowestoft in Suffolk over seven days.

The pair set off on the morning of April 30 and completed the challenge on May 5 – Ed’s 50th birthday.

Mike described the challenge as “really hard work.”

He said: “ Although we really enjoyed it the weather was a challenge and on Saturday the winds were really strong.

“We saw some fantastic scenery.”

Mike added: “The training and hard work paid off and we felt really good.

“On Sunday we were absolutely exhausted and we were happy to collapse and not do a lot.”

Currently the pair have raised £4,600 but they are still waiting for some donations to come in.

Mike said: “It’s fantastic how much we have raised.”

Mike and Ed decided to take up the challenge in the summer of 2017 when Ed was deciding what he should do to celebrate his milestone birthday.

Ed said: “I thought ‘I don’t really want to do a party so why don’t I do a bike ride?’.

“I think my wife expected a relaxing weekend away somewhere, not this!”

The pair, who both work in the shipping industry, decided to do the challenge – which they are calling the ‘wide ride’ – in aid of the Alzheimer’s Society.

They chose to raise money for the charity as both of them and their partners, Sam Foulds and Dee Matthews have links to Alzheimer’s through family connections.

Mike, 40 said: “It is close to all of our hearts and we have all seen people suffer with Alzheimer’s.

“My father passed away from Alzheimer’s last year at the age of 77.

“He was such a bubbly person and near the end he lost his personality and he didn’t recognise members of our family.

“My dad was able to participate in some medical trials and he liked this as he felt like he was making a difference.

“Now I want to feel like I’m making a difference.”

Ed added:” My wife’s mum died from Alzheimer’s.

“It was a difficult time as, when it hits, the soul of the person dies before they do.

“We decided it was the best charity for both of us to raise money for due to our personal connections.“I just want to raise money for the research so hopefully one day scientists can find a cure.”

Mike added: “Hopefully those who are less fortunate will benefit, and some of the funds will be able to help cure this terrible disease.”