The Twentieth Century Society

Campaigning for outstanding buildings

Elain Harwood in cycling kit at the entrance of Highpoint
Elain Harwood bicycle

Pedal power: Elain Harwood’s cycle challenge for C20

The Tour de France is over, but another epic cycle ride will be unfolding on the roads of Europe this autumn.

Architectural historian and former C20 trustee Elain Harwood is tackling the Paris to Geneva Cycle Challenge, to raise funds for the Society’s journals.

There’ll be no hiding in the peloton, as Elain rides a daunting 324-mile (521km) route from Paris to Geneva, via Sens, Semur-en-Auxois and Lons-Le-Saunier.

Over four days, from 7-10 September, Elain will experience the highs (and lows) of life in the fast lane, negotiating steep climbs and tricky descents on a schedule described by the organisers as “tough”.

Her preparations have been affected by the recent wet weather – ‘My training so far has consisted of cycling to Southend’ – but this weekend’s Prudential RideLondon-Surrey 100 will be an even bigger challenge. ‘I will need all the help I can get – after this the Paris-Geneva will seem easy!’

We don’t know whether Elain plans to emulate 2015 Tour de France winner Chris Froome by wearing a ‘maillot jaune’. Judging by the photo she will be riding in some eye-catching red footwear.

Thanks to some generous donors, she’s already making progress towards her fundraising target of £521 – £1 for every km she’s going to cycle – for this epic cycling adventure. It’s a great start, but we still need your help to beat that target.

If you would like to support Elain Harwood and C20, please make a donation via her mydonate page. If you can go the extra mile by gift aiding your sponsorship, that will boost the total even more.


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