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Cycle ride from Lisbon to Maidstone Hospital raises £5,000 to be split between renal units at Maidstone Hospital and Canterbury Hospital

If it was not for his wife Richest Winchester would not be alive today.

The father-of-one needed a life-saving kidney transplant after a rare form of cancer, which only affects 30 people in the UK, knocked out both of his own.

The 50-year-old, an insurance salesman from Maidstone, underwent a five-hour operation at Guy’s Hospital in London a year ago after his wife Allison stepped up as a donor.

Richard with his wife Alison
Richard with his wife Alison

He had previously had extensive treatment in the renal units of Maidstone and Canterbury hospitals.

Since then the cancer, known as Free Light Chains Disease, has returned.

Despite this, close friends Gary Blesson and Dave Shepherd embarked on a 1,400-mile bike ride from Portugal to Maidstone Hospital’s kidney unit to show their gratitude.

They are on target to raise £5,000 to spend in the renal unites where Richard was treated.

Gary Blesson and David Shepherd completed the bike ride
Gary Blesson and David Shepherd completed the bike ride

He said: “It is incredible what those two guys did.

“I had no choice when it came to losing my kidneys but Gary and Dave could always have turned my challenge down.

“Instead, they faced it head-on and turned up at 2.02pm – just two minutes late! I am so proud of them both.”

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