This year Medwyn Parry, Chairman of the Aberystwyth & District MAG and Dougie Bancroft will be visiting all of the 51 Thankful Villages in the United Kingdom, where everybody who went away to fight in the Great War returned home. Amazingly 14 of these are “Double Thankful”, where they also returned from the Second World War.
The journey starts at Llanfihangel-y-Creuddyn near Aberystwyth on Saturday the 27th of July and finishes at the same point on the evening of the 4th of August, covering 2,500 miles over 9 days. A TV film crew will be documenting the whole trip.
The project will raise money for the Royal British Legion, and the target is £51,000 – equal to £1,000 per village. Anything over the target amount will be split between the British Legion, the Fire Fighters Charity – and of course MAG. As far as we know nobody has visited all 51 in one trip.
We must stress, this will NOT be a race, and it will NOT be a ride of endurance. This will be a ride of respect. The local residents of the Thankful Villages are tremendously proud of their status. We will be meeting descendants of those who survived the conflict, plus members of the Royal British Legion. We also plan to meet up with fellow riders who may want to join us for any part of the journey. But there will be a minimum donation of £5.00 per bike per day. So if you want to be part of a historic ride – come and join us.
The story of the Thankful Villages seems to strike a chord with everyone – a celebration of joy for a few settlements during a time of so much horror. We are asking nothing of any of the places that we visit, and will be presenting a certificate and a plaque to each community.
Triumph Motorcycles will be providing us with two shiny new Sprint GTs, equipped with a tracker from Biketrec, so you’ll be able to follow our progress in real time over t’internet.
We have a Facebook Group – Thankful Villages Run 2013, and the website has a map of the route, and anything else you might need to know.
We sincerely hope you can help us raise the profile of these villages and celebrate their blessed fortune.