A FOOTBALL mad family will be taking part in a two-wheeled tour of the nation’s top flight stadiums to raise funds for charity.
Jim Bowerman, from Crossways, will cycle over 1,000 miles in 12 days as he takes on the Tour de Prem, which will see him visit all 20 Premier League football grounds from Newcastle to Southampton.
He will be joined by five other riders including his brother Andy, brother-in-law Seamus Bowerman-Ellis and Andy’s son Josh as they raise funds for a football facility in a deprived area of Brazil.
The ride has been organised by the Lionsraw movement, which aims to use the football as a force for making a difference across the globe.
In 2010 Jim and members of his family joined the Lionsraw team on a charity project in South Africa, helping to build changing rooms adjacent to a football pitch at an orphanage for children who have lost their parents to HIV and Aids.
While Jim – who described the South Africa trip as a ‘once in a lifetime’ experience – is unable to make it out to Brazil this summer, he is still determined to do his bit and all funds raised will go towards building a football centre in one of the most deprived favelas in Curitiba.
He said: “We all believe quite strongly in the charity.
“It’s something we really want to try and raise money for.
“We have a passion for football and a passion for cycling as well so it’s great way to combine the two and raise money.”
The team will start their challenge at Swansea City’s Liberty Stadium on April 15 and finish their route, which also takes in Wembley, at Southampton’s St Mary’s Stadium on April 26.
Father-of-four Jim, 41, said that training for the gruelling challenge had almost taken over their lives recently, with the team coming together to train most weekends while he also heads out on the bike every evening.
He says it will all be worth it though for the cause and they are hoping to raise as much as £50,000.
Jim said Andy was chaplain at Southampton Football Club and was looking to get members of the squad to donate some of their wages to boost the funds.
They have also been supported by Cyclexperience Wareham.
For more information about the charity challenge or to sponsor Jim or any of his fellow riders visit tourdeprem.com You can also sponsor the team by texting BRAS14 £10 to 70070.