Round Strathaven 50
The Round Strathaven 50 Charity cycle event was held for the first time in 2002, using the same route as two 50 mile sponsored walks organised by the Strathaven Scout Group in 1968 and 1970. It has attracted an increasing number of participants each year, and in its 13 years to date has raised £65,000 for the benefit of both the Strathaven Scouts and Guides, a number of local Scottish Charities including Capability Scotland, CHAS Scotland, the East Kilbride based Kilbryde Hospice Appeal and Child Line in Scotland and also of the Charity, Health Help International, for its work of healing and help for the poor and destitute in Southern India and Zambia.
The RS50 is held every August and is a challenging cycle run, following a route of 50 miles around the Strathaven area through the surrounding villages of Sandford, Glassford, Chapleton and Auldhouse. The growing number of experienced cyclists who take part see the 50 mile route as presenting them with a worthwhile challenge. There is also an alternative and equally popular 15 mile route for those who prefer a lesser but equally worth-while challenge and for families with younger children.
Tea & Cakes, from Strathaven to The World - report from 2014
Once again those good folk from Friends of Strathaven Scouts have cajoled and coerced cycling enthusiasts from near and far to raise more than £10,000 for good causes, including the upkeep of the local Scout & Guide Hall, and the future of the various associated packs of local youngsters.
The annual Round Strathaven 50 cycle run attracted more than 500 cyclists, most covering the full 50 mile circuit but with the family friendly 15 mile run also busy. The 2014 event evoked the spirit of Glasgows Commonwealth Games and to add to the occasion more than 200 runners joined in the fun, with some seriously hard-core ultra runners tackling the full course together with numerous teams in relay.
On the day the weather was cruel, but not as unkind as feared. Strong winds kept the times down, and made marshalling difficult in the logistics of being in the right place at the right time. But the rain largely kept a distance, the darkening clouds rolling round the surrounding hills as the wheels rolled the local roads.
And despite the weather the organisers were delighted to welcome to the finish young Daisy Taylor, at only seven years old the youngest to complete the full 50 mile challenge. With her brother Finlay she urged on her parents, local bakers, Barry and Claire, to ensure a family finish after a long day in the saddle.
The feedback from participants is very heartening, with many promises of a return next year as cyclists headed back to the car park, or as some did, to warm down with another lengthy cycle home. Cakes are a recurring theme in the comments, and the quality and extent of the home baking available provided plenty fuel, and too much temptation, at the feeding stations, with cakes at Sandford and hot tea in china cups at Glassford amongst the plaudits.
The event takes much planning, with signage improving each year and teams of marshalls enjoying the day out just as much as the participants, combining to create a very special atmosphere. Planning has already begun for August 2015.
The second edition of the popular Round Straven 50 Route Guide published by FOSS is now available priced £5. The booklet describes both routes together with a number of variations. It not only provides a detailed description of the routes with accompanying OS maps but includes lots of information about the area and the places and items of interest which can be seen or visited and it should prove of interest to not only cyclists but walkers and even runners. Copies can be obtained by contacting Iain Park (see Contact Us for details) or a copy can be obtained at the discounted price of £4.50 from various Strathaven Business Association outlets in Strathaven for those holding The Strathaven Card visit its website.
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