TWO researchers from Southampton are getting on their bikes for Cycle 300, an exciting new fundraising campaign from Cancer Research UK.

Clinical research fellow Rob Walker and his colleague Jack Harrington, a research technician, are urging men and women to sign up now and then choose how, when and where to clock up 300 miles on a bike throughout September.

The pair, who cycle to and from the Southampton Cancer Research UK Centre regularly, where they are researching oesophageal cancer, are keen to show how pedal power can make a crucial difference to people diagnosed with the disease.

Rob’s job involves assisting in surgery where he takes samples from tumours removed from a patient which are then transferred straight to the lab for detailed examination.

Working with Jack, they are using cutting edge technology enabling them to smash apart the tumour to look at the cells contained within it, how those cells could be helping a cancer to grow and what drugs could possibly be developed in the future to stop the cancer developing.

Rob said: “If you’ve been in a lab or in theatre all day it can be quite intense and there’s nothing better than to get out on your bike in the fresh air. I love cycling and I think this is a great way to raise money for Cancer Research UK’s vital research.”

Jack added: “I can sometimes be working until 3am if we have a tumour coming straight from theatre. The good thing about Cycle 300 is anyone can take part and choose how and when to do it, so that it fits in with their work, lifestyle and commitments.”

Participants are asked to cycle 300 miles during September and can choose their own routes and pace.

Rob continued: “I’d like to encourage as many people as possible to get into gear and help raise money by signing up for Cycle 300. Everyone who participates will be supporting the efforts of doctors, nurses and scientists working on the front line against cancer.”

Jenny Makin, Cancer Research UK spokesperson for Southampton, said: “We are very grateful to Rob and Jack for their support and hope it will start a chain-reaction, sparking the interest of cyclists of all ages and abilities.

“You can sign up on your own or make it more social by challenging family, friends and colleagues to join you – it’s a fantastic opportunity to commit to a healthy challenge."

Jenny added: “One in two people in the UK will be diagnosed with cancer at some point in their lives. Research is very expensive and the only way we can fund it is with the help of our supporters. By taking part in Cycle 300, men and women can make a real difference in the fight against the disease.”

For a free fundraising pack visit