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Pedalling the miles for charity cash

Federation representatives will be joining officers and staff on a 180-mile bike ride to raise money in memory of fallen colleagues.

The UK Police Unity Tour starts on 29 July with 30 officers and staff from Leicestershire taking part in the three-day event to raise money for the charity Care of Police Survivors (COPS).

They will include Leicestershire Police Federation chair Tiff Lynch and Fed reps Laura Millward, Emma Gilbert and Jon Carter-Lang. They will be backed up by a support crew of seven people including Federation deputy chairman Mick Graham.

"I am looking forward to the tour though I must admit that I need to get in a bit more training," says Tiff.

"It's going to a tough three days for me but I will be spurred on by the knowledge that all the money raised will be going to such a worthwhile cause."

The East Midlands chapter of the tour was set up by Leicestershire Sergeant Pete Williams last year when 12 riders and four support staff battled through torrential rain on Day 1 and bright sunshine the next day.

The event culminates on the Sunday with all chapters from across the UK meeting up and riding into the National Memorial Arboretum at Alrewas for a service to remember fallen officers organised by COPS.

As part of the event all those taking part ride wearing a metal wrist band inscribed with the name of an officer who died on duty. They then present the family of the fallen officer with the band at the service.

The Police Unity Tour originally started in America 1997 with 18 cyclists making the journey from New Jersey to Washington DC. In 2013, inspired by the massive fund-raising efforts by the Police Unity Tour in the United States, two officers from the Metropolitan Police organised the UK's first Police Unity Tour in aid of COPS.