MORE than 1,000 cyclists completed rides totally about 16,000 miles through the UK and Europe at the weekend, in aid of Downton-based charity Help for Heroes.

The Hero Ride is expected to hit the £1m fundraising target for the charity, which supports veterans who have been wounded or injured or fallen ill.

On Sunday the riders set off and headed for London, where they all came together to cycle the final ten miles into the capital, where they made the shape of the Help for Heroes medal around the Cenotaph.

They paused to pay their respects for the fallen before heading to Horse Guards Parade to be greeted by Help for Heroes founder Bryn Parry, from Downton, and former Chieg of the General Staff Lord Dannatt.

Two rides set off from Help for Heroes Recovery Centre at Tedworth House in Tidworth over the course of the weekend as fundraisers and some of the wounded, injured and sick joined together to form The Puffing Pedallers, completing 100 miles in two days.

Team member Sophie Tetley, from Salisbury, said: “What an unforgettable weekend, many laughs, many hills, and some inspirational people who made Hero Ride the privilege it was.”

A 100 mile ‘Dawn Raid’ cycling sportive also set off from Tedworth House on Sunday as more cyclists made their way into London for the finale.

The money raised during Hero Ride 2014 will be used to support the 10,535 British men and women injured or struck down with sickness during the recent conflicts, including Iraq and Afghanistan.

For anyone wishing to donate to the Hero Ride, text RIDE to 70900 to donate £5 to Help for Heroes. You will be charged £5 plus your standard network rate. Mobile Text Telephone helpline: 01494 750 500.