BBC stars ride in to launch county's Children in Need appeal

This Is Wiltshire: Corsham’s Charity Sci-Fi Group and friends collecting in The Shires shopping centre Corsham’s Charity Sci-Fi Group and friends collecting in The Shires shopping centre

Stars of The One Show were in Wiltshire this week to launch this year’s BBC Children in Need appeal.

Presenters Alex Jones and Matt Baker cycled through Bradford on Avon, Trowbridge, Frome and Westbury as part of their Rickshaw Challenge.

Supporters lined the streets to cheer on the pair and the rest of their team of young volunteers from across the country.

The challenge started last Friday, in Llandudno, Wales, and they are expected to arrive at Television Centre in London tonight, for the charity’s annual BBC One appeal show.

Mr Baker said: “We left Bath at 6.30am and we’ve really enjoyed the beautiful scenery, but not the steep hills.

“The support we’ve received has been wonderful and I think this is the most picturesque route we’ve travelled along so far.”

On Tuesday evening, the presenters were joined by comedian John Bishop, to present a BBC show in Bath and switch on the city’s Christmas lights.

Miss Jones said: “It was an excellent night. We had such a huge crowd and John Bishop did a great job. It was a lovely atmosphere and the support was phenomenal and of great benefit to the team after a long day of cycling.”

Clubs, schools and businesses across the county have also been gearing up for the annual appeal.

Charity Sci-Fi, in Corsham, brought Darth Vader and Chewbacca to the shopping centre and raised £648 in two days. On Friday, the group will lend a hand at BBC Wiltshire’s Children in Need celebrations at Steam – Museum of the Great Western Railway, at 6pm. And on Saturday, they will be collecting donations between 10am and 4pm at Cabot Circus.

The Hot Chilli Triathlon Club in Trowbridge will be attempting a relay challenge, running a 24-hour triathlon.

A team of volunteers will start off swimming in Trowbridge pool on Friday, before moving to the lobby of the town’s Tesco Express shop on Saturday, where they will get on exercise bikes and running machines to complete the challenge.

Dancers from the Mr Wilkins’ Shilling morris side have already raised more than £160 for the appeal.

The dancing women put on a morris display in Lamb Yard, Bradford on Avon last Saturday.

Staff at Southern Electric will be getting into the fundraising spirit with a host of events at the firm’s Spa Road depot.

Heroes and villains fancy dress and an office casino will be on offer on Friday, to encourage everyone to dig deep into their pockets and help the cause.

Children across the county are also doing their bit.

Students at Fairfield Farm College in Dilton Marsh are organising horse and trike races, while the Mead Community School’s Wingfield Site is running a sponsored gym circuit.

Many schools are holding pyjama non-uniform days, including Kings Park Primary in Melksham and Seend Church of England Primary School. The televised appeal show, presented by Sir Terry Wogan and Tess Daly, starts on Friday at 7.30pm, on BBC One.

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