Sue Jenner gets on her bike
What did a big-hearted Nailsea woman do when she decided to slow down after a decade working as a counsellor – she got on her bike for a 450-mile cross country ride to raise money for the voluntary service.
Sue Jenner rode uphill and down dale across the south west on a solo sponsored challenge which so far has raised more than £1,000 for Wellspring Counselling.
Wellspring is a charity based at the Methodist church centre at Silver Street and serves the communities of Nailsea, Clevedon, Portishead and surrounding villages.
Wellspring provides affordable counselling for adults and free counselling and cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) for young people.
As part of Wellspring's 25th anniversary celebration, Sue and her ‘trusty’ two-wheeled steed journeyed from Nailsea in mid-May through Bristol, Bridgwater, Bideford, Budleigh Salterton, Bournemouth, Bath, Bristol and ended up back in Nailsea on Thursday, May 23.
On route Sue sent postcards ‘home’ detailing where she had got to and what she had seen with an update on what her bike was feeling!
Sue began as a trainee counsellor in 2007 and qualified a year later.
She continued working for Wellspring seeing many vulnerable clients until semi-retirement in 2018.
Wellspring is always in need of more funds to sustain and grow the number of sessions they provide.
To date Sue’s adventure has raised £1,335.00 and her Just Giving page is still open.
To donate click HERE..
74 Chapel Precinct
Bristol BS48 2DS
Day 1: First day of ride. Up over Avalon marshes to Bridgewater and Taunton via canals. Heard a cuckoo sing - 60 miles down.
Day 2: Taunton to Dulverton, reflecting on the difference between green exercise therapy and the paralysing tail-spin of mindless scrolling with social media that people describe. Heard a woodpecker.
Day 3: Complete 140 miles now. Left Dulverton and climbed up - or rather walked uphill and whizzed downhill - and over the moors then on to Barnstaple and Bideford via the Tarka Trail. Saw no one when I was at the highest point apart from a farmer feeding the sheep. Larks were singing and sun was shining, and I had a piece of cake at the end of it all.
Day 4: Bideford to Oakhampton. Very hilly after leaving the Tarka Trail. Was out by 7am and didn’t meet anyone. Was very good but did reflect on how it is for those who are lonely. Such a lovely country we live in. Saw an egret.
Day 5: Sydney is in a heap after cycling up the hill outside Sidmouth. He needed a lot of coaxing to move and got stuck in a ditch. Exe estuary was so peaceful and easy he was beguiled into thinking it was all going to be like that. Having to face anxiety and difficulties over this time has taught me how hard it can be when in the grip of anxiety that induces powerlessness. Saw a mother duck with six babies. They are all busy nesting.
Day 6: Didn’t take a single picture today Just plodded up numerous hills and operated on the principle of small steps lead to big shifts which had led to 280 miles. Six hours of cycling today - much peering at maps…got lost many times. But I tried to practice gratitude when faced with a hill - it’s such fun whizzing down. It has only rained once. We live in such a beautiful country with such wonderful wildlife - Sydney is a very special trusty bike saw a teeny tiny baby rabbit.
Day 7-8: Climbed out of Shipton Gorge through the Valley of Bones up to Hardy monument on to Dorchester, Blandford Forum and along the trail way of the old Dorset railway. Magnificent countryside! Sydney has been moaning about the hills! We have been reflecting on what acceptance looks like rather than resistance which uses up our energy! Softening around what is reality and accepting what is! Putting a positive meaning on it. Look how strong I have become and it will pass! Saw a fox and a deer in the early mistiness of the morning
Day 9: Sydney has pretensions as National Cycle Network route 25 took us from Blandford Forum up through Stourhead grounds and Longleat. So lovely. Sydney says that he is pleased with himself and notices that having faced the challenges of hills he is getting stronger. He now recognises the importance of spending energy enjoying every moment. One more day left Frome to Bath to Bristol to Nailsea
And at journey’s end Sue added: “Well it’s done.
“Thank you to everyone, 450 miles Sydney is resting.
“He says his tyres are sore but is very proud of himself.
“We came ‘lickety split’ (full speed); starting in the misty early morning; mostly on old railways from Frome to Radstock to Bath to Bristol to Nailsea via the festival way.
“I am mindful of those who went before us to create these ways as railways.
“I am thankful to Sustrans and the NCN for the safety of its routes and I am grateful for the sense of achievement gained from navigating up and down hills and round such beautiful countryside. I saw a stoat.
"I am grateful for the sense of connection with those of you who support this wonderful, affordable and available service of ethical counselling provision for all.”