A Pork Farms employee has raised £5,000 for cancer charity Macmillan by completing a major cycling challenge. 

Bernie Gibbons, who works at the group’s Riverside Bakery site in Nottingham, had never owned a bicycle before taking on the 600 mile Bike2 My Roots ride.

The trip saw the 46-year-old cycle through the north of England and Scotland before crossing to Northern Ireland to complete the eight-day journey.

Gibbons was invited by his brother-in-law Johnny Toner to join the challenge team after Toner and his relative Sean Garvin completed a similar ride in memory of Mr Garvin’s father two years ago.

Despite only buying a bicycle in April, Gibbons’ training paid off as he travelled an average of 80 miles a day.

Gibbons said: “I had no experience of cycling prior to this adventure as I had never owned a bicycle in my life, but something about this challenge appealed to me, so I agreed to give it a go.

“There are all sorts of statistics that show how hard this challenge was, but none of those matter - it’s the fact we did what we set out to do that is important.

“I have been given fantastic support by the Riverside Bakery team. At Riverside, we have all been touched by the cruelty of cancer and are very aware of how the Macmillan team helps support victims and their families.”

Deborah Bolton, general manager of Pork Farms Riverside, described Gibbons’ effort as “a phenomenal feat of determination”.

She added: “What Bernie has achieved is truly inspirational and everybody at the Riverside Bakery is in absolute awe of his efforts.”