Charity Support

What started off as a club ride for a friend, has grown to be one of the most famous cycling events in Europe, never in our wildest dreams did we think the event would be still running after 20 years and would generate such a fantastic amount of donations for our Special Charities. In recent years the event has given MacMillan Nurses an average of just over £100,000 each year. Along with this, the event has shared the donation of £608,000 to the two Air Ambulances in Cumbria, The Mountain Rescue and Various youth Cycling projects.


We are MacmillanMacmillan Cancer Support provides medical, financial, practical and emotional help & information to cancer patients and wants to ensure that no one faces cancer alone.

Nearly 1 in 4 newly diagnosed cancer patients lack support from family and friends during their treatment and recovery. Of these, many will receive no help whatsoever, facing cancer completely alone. More than half of isolated patients have skipped meals or not eaten properly due to a lack of support at home. More than one in four have been unable to wash themselves properly, while three in five have been unable to do household chores. 80% say the financial impact of cancer means they can’t afford to see their family or friends as much. Isolation can have a truly shattering impact. Patients are going hungry, missing medical appointments and even deciding to reject treatment altogether which could be putting their lives at risk – all because of a lack of support.

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NW air ambulanceNorth West Air Ambulance Charity (NWAA) operates 3 helicopters from our Manchester and Blackpool bases and need to raise over £8 million each year to keep our life-saving service running. We take advanced healthcare to the scene; reaching, treating and transferring patients to definitive care as quickly as possible and working collaboratively with our partners to ensure they are transferred to the best treatment centre thus improving chances of survival and reducing the risk of long term injury.

Just as many critically injured patients would not survive without the service, your North West Air Ambulance Charity would not be here without you. The service is funded by the generosity of the public through donations, fundraising activity, lottery membership and through our network of retail outlets, who provide vital charitable funding to keep our service flying.


The Great North Air Ambulance Service (GNAAS) rescues hundreds of severely injured or ill patients every year throughout the North East, North Yorkshire and Cumbria. Their doctor-led critical care teams deliver life-saving treatments at the scene of the incident whether that is on a fell top, a roadside or in a city centre. The charity responded to 1,640 call-outs last year* alone, via their helicopter and emergency response vehicles, where they performed treatments and procedures which can mean the difference between life or death. This lifesaving service costs over £5.3 million a year and is entirely charity funded, their work would not be possible without the generous support of the public.

*financial year April 18 – March 19


Duddon Furness RescueA charity funded solely by donation from the public based just outside Broughton in Furness. It comprises of 35 volunteers and with three vehicles we are prepared to help others 24 hours a day 365 days a year in any weather. It costs us around £40,000 per year to function and so our relationship with the Fred Whitton Challenge has been an essential fundraiser. Over the last few years, FWC donations have helped us to convert two Landrovers to Mountain Rescue Ambulances. These have been used on around 25 incidents per year since then, but the number of call-outs is increasing. We rescue all kind of people: walkers, climbers, mountain bikers, folk in swift water and road cyclists. But we are often involved in incidents involving local residents like missing adults or children or victims of flood. We often assist Cumbria Police, the North West Ambulance Service and HM Coast Guard carry out difficult tasks as well as the odd dog or sheep rescue for local farmers! We could not do any of these without state of the art response vehicles and the FWC has played a big a part in helping us do this. We are indebted to the FWC for their generosity over the last few years, thank FWC and thank you to all the riders. Please keep up the ‘Good Effort’.

Millom BeSPOKE Biking

Millom BeSpoke Biking is a cycling based life enrichment project for pupils in the Millom area. Although school-based, the project is totally self-funding and could not function without the support of sponsors such as the Wheelbase Fred Whitton Challenge.
Millom is in the District of Copeland which has high levels of social deprivation, alcohol consumption and smoking. It has the highest levels of childhood obesity in the whole of the UK. Millom BeSpoke Biking members are pupils from this area, and the objective of the club is to take in disused or unwanted bikes from the local communities. The members then assess and rebuild or repair the bikes as required then, in the summer of each year, the members ride the bikes they built or repaired on the C2C cross country route over 5 days, staying in campsites overnight.
During the year, as well as learning practical skills, they also learn interpersonal, workplace and life skills. The club also teaches road riding skills, including group riding, nutrition and provides winter “turbo training” sessions to build fitness.
This holistic approach goes a long way to counter some of the health & lifestyle issues the members may face living in Copeland. Indeed since the club has started there is already an increase in children riding bikes in the Millom area-some groups mentored by members from the club!


Some of the youth projects The Fred Whitton Challenge has supported include:

  • The Zappi Boys Youth team
  • The Racing Chance Girls Youth Team
  • The YRDP Girls youth team
  • Sandside Lodge School bikes for disabled children
  • Children and Young People’s Project Sight Advice
  • Furness Flyers Cycle coaching
  • Youth Cyclo Cross Events
  • Allithwaite Pump Track.

Friends of the Fred

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Want to get involved?

It takes over 350 registered volunteers to keep the Wheelbase Fred Whitton Challenge going. If you’d like to help out at the event jobs for volunteers vary depending on location, time of day and skills. Please register your interest before the event. All volunteers are guaranteed a place on the following years' ride.

Or you can donate to any of our chosen charities. All donations are well received and go to helping fund these fantastic services in the community.