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Head Chef gets on his bike in memory of hotel manager

The 41-year-old Crawley resident is gearing up for the Hit the Downs off-road challenge , raising money for two great causes.

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Executive Head Chef of the Arora Hotel Gatwick/Crawley, Tony Staples, is getting on his bike for a good cause, and his team are right behind him!

The 41-year-old Crawley resident and father of two is gearing up for the Hit the Downs off-road challenge on Sunday, May 6. As well as raising money for Sussex charity, Chestnut Tree House Children’s Hospice, Tony’s fundraising efforts will go towards the Royal Marsden Hospital, in memory of Bruno Delrieux, who managed the Arora Hotel Gatwick/Crawley for over 10 years, until recently.

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“Bruno was a genuinely nice bloke and everyone in the hotel loved working for him and all miss him very much,” said Tony. “I wanted to do this bike challenge in his memory and no matter how tough the ride gets, I will keep going, as it will never be as hard as fighting cancer.”

The chef, who did his catering qualifications at Crawley College, has been in training for several months ready for the 60km ride, doing cage fit exercise, box fit, and regular weight training sessions in the hotel’s own gym, Inspire Fitness. Every day he rides his bike to work at the luxury hotel where he heads up a team of chefs, creating dishes for conferences, banquets, the Arora’s two bars and internet café, as well as The Grill, the town’s only AA-rosette restaurant.

Visit Tony’s JustGiving page on www.justgiving.com/fundraising/tony-staples2

The Arora Group, which manages and operates the hotel, will also be fundraising on behalf of the Royal Marsden Hospital and Macmillan Cancer Support later this year at its bi-annual Arora Ball event, held at InterContinental London – The O2.

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Charity

Southern Rail train drivers smash rowathon target

Three train drivers from Southern Rail have smashed their fundraising target by relay-rowing the distance from London to Paris in 24 hours on Brighton Station concourse.

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Richard Brown (centre) with Richard Quinn (left) and Gary Harman (right) have raised almost £6,000 for Cancer Research UK

Three train drivers from Southern Rail have smashed their fundraising target by relay-rowing the distance from London to Paris in 24 hours on Brighton Station concourse.

The trio are on their way to tripling their target of £2,000 for Cancer Research UK with a staggering £1,541 raised by bucket collectors alone and a further £4,200 in pledges plus donations on their sponsorship page.

Driver competency manager Richard Quinn and drivers Gary Harman and Richard Brown came away with raw hands but not too many aches and pains after the rowing machine marathon that began at 12 noon on Friday (11 January).

Richard Quinn, 42, from Portslade, said:

“Everything went to plan and we were amazed by the amount of support we got from everyone. We had many people telling us inspirational and sadly tragic stories about how cancer had affected their lives, which only pushed us on more.

“I think we all suffered between 3-6am but once the station opened again on Saturday and people started to arrive it became easier.”

All three have had their lives touched by cancer. A colleague of theirs, who was only in his thirties, died from the disease recently.

Richard added:

“Our colleague’s death at such a young age affected us all. In the past year, five of my direct family members plus work colleagues have been diagnosed or treated for cancer. Sadly, I’ve known of several deaths because of this cruel disease.”

Richard’s father, 71, who was successfully treated for colorectal cancer, came along to support his son.

Richard Brown, 37, and also from Brighton, said:

“I lost my best friend Elena to Non-Hodgkin lymphoma two years ago after a long battle. It made me painfully aware of just how cruel and non-discriminating cancer could be.”

The drivers’ sponsorship page remains up and running for donations at https://bit.ly/2sdmYrR

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