Dr Dawn’s cycle challenge for National Star

Dr Dawn Harper at home in Sheepscombe

Dr Dawn Harper at home in Sheepscombe - Credit: Archant

TV doctor Dr Dawn Harper knows first hand how important it is to give young people with disabilities the best start in life.

Now she is saddling up to lead a cycle challenge to help a charity which supports young people with disabilities.

The 100km Star 100 cycle challenge on September 22 will raise money for National Star at Ullenwood, near Cheltenham.

Dawn’s 16-year-old son Harvey has cerebral palsy. He attends mainstream school and Dawn praises his determination to be in charge of his own life.

“Harvey has true grit - as do all the students I meet at National Star. What National Star provides them with is the confidence, skills and education to take control of their lives and to make their own decisions, to do the things the rest of us simply take for granted,” she said.

Dawn, who hosts Channel 4’s Embarrassing Bodies, is a keen cyclist. She took up the sport after a hit-and-run accident in the 2003 left her with a knee injury.

On average she cycles 50-100 miles every week and has taken part in several cycling challenges to Amsterdam, Brussels, and Paris as well as numerous other rides here in the UK.

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She is urging people to join her on the challenge and support National Star.

National Star, which is a charity, supports hundreds of people with disabilities in Gloucestershire. It provides education, training and personal development. It received an outstanding result in a recent Ofsted report.

“I have seen how National Star transforms young people’s lives. But they can’t do this amazing work without community support,” says Dawn who also still works as a GP in the Cotswolds.

The route includes some steep climbs at Bisley, Sapperton and Caudle Green and takes in scenic routes around Kemble, Chedworth, Bibury and Cowley.

It costs £20 to register and cyclists are being asked to raise a minimum £80 in sponsorship.

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To register call National Star on 01242 524478 or email fundraising@natstar.ac.uk