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Posted on: 7th May 2013

Charity Cycle raises £1,000 for SOS Bus

Pictured, three senior Essex Police officers, Andy Fusher, Adrian Coombs and Geoff Connoll who successfully completed a 160 mile sponsored ride around Essex and Suffolk to raise over £1,000 for Open Road.

A team of Essex Police staff, including senior officer, Specialist Operations Superintendent Adrian Coombs, will undertake a challenging 160 mile sponsored cycle ride across Essex and Suffolk on 9th & 10th May. The group is cycling to raise money for drug and alcohol addiction charity, Open Road and their SOS Bus.

Open Road, provides support to people and their families from treatment centres across East Anglia but it is the SOS Bus that is close to Adrian’s heart.

‘I've been involved with the SOS Bus since 2008 as a founder member of the group which set up this innovative service in Colchester. The Bus is staffed entirely by volunteers and the work they do is fantastic– it is real, and relevant and does much to make the town centre a better place to be on weekend evenings.’

Since its launch, the SOS Bus service has gone from strength to strength and now supports over 4,000 people a year. On duty every weekend night in Colchester High Street, the Bus is funded in the main by Colchester Borough Council but keeping the service going each year remains a constant financial challenge. The Bus provides support to the Police, Ambulance Service, pubs & clubs which all benefit from on the spot support for people overcome by the effects of drink and drugs, vulnerable individuals who need a chat and those needing treatment for minor injuries in the Bus’ special medical unit.

Suffolk is also benefitting from the SOS Bus service. Over the 2012 Christmas period, a pilot project Bus service was on duty in Ipswich and treated more than 80 people over 4 weekends.

Chief Executive Sarah Wright says: ‘We were really encouraged by the feedback we got from the Ipswich pilot and hope to work with services in the town again.’

The police team’s 160 mile route will be completed over two days and will drop in at some of Open Road’s treatment centres on the way.

‘We will start at Open Road’s centre in London Road, Chelmsford at 9.15am on Thursday and cycle North to Theftford and stay overnight. The second day will take us through Lakenheath, Bury St Edmunds, Dedham and Ardleigh finishing at North Hill, Colchester on Friday afternoon. If you’d like to make a donation, please visit my Just Giving page

Notes to Editors:

Open Road is a registered charity and leading provider of drug and alcohol treatment services in the East of England. In 2015 Open Road will be celebrating 25 years of delivering high quality services to empower individuals and families to recover from the harmful impact of drugs and alcohol. Every year Open Road helps thousands of individuals and their families to combat their drug and alcohol addictions, offering a range of one to one support, group therapy and harm reduction services. Open road currently employs over 100 staff and has a team of over 200 volunteers who actively support our work.

For further information about Open Road please contact us.