A GROUP of fundraisers are preparing to cycle from Chepstow to Cornwall in memory of a man who passed away six years ago - in an event which has been undertaken every year since.
Josh Morgan died in December 2015 after suffering from sepsis.
He was 24 years old.
In his memory, friends and family have completed a near-200-mile cycle from Chepstow to Padstow in Cornwall to support the Sepsis Trust.
The first ride was undertaken in 2016 and this year’s event will be the fifth anniversary of the fundraising challenge.
Friend Stuart Brown said that the idea came about in honour of a now-legendary ride thought up by Mr Morgan himself some years previous.
“My mum and dad have a caravan down in Cornwall and every year we go on a boys holiday to it,” explained Mr Brown.
“Then one year Josh had the great idea of riding to Cornwall.
“I could drive my dad’s people carrier and we all needed some way of getting home so I instantly said that I would drive.”
Mr Morgan managed to convince friends Adam Wilson and Ashley Smith to go with him and the ride which became known as ‘The Goochbuster’ was born.
The name was dreamt up due to the unfortunate effect cycling long distances can have on one’s more sensitive areas.
It proved ill-fated as after getting lost on the first day, the group woke up to look at the route for day two and it turned out that Mr Morgan had printed the day one route three times.
“So it was all a bit of guess work from there on in,” said Mr Brown.
Get to Padstow they did, however, but that was not the end of the story.
It emerged after Mr Morgan passed away, that the cyclists may not have been as intrepid as they made out.
“For years after the ride we all assumed they did it in full and heroically made it even given the lack of maps/routes,” said Mr Brown.
“It turns out the three of them got a train the one day and they actually got to Cornwall a day early.”
The trio spent the night rough on the beach, going to the pub the next day to wait for the support vehicle to arrive.
“This was only revealed to be the truth after we lost Josh but the jokes about the train ride still continue all the time,” said Mr Brown.
Since Mr Morgan’s death, the group raise money for the Sepsis Trust.
“As the years have gone on we have had T-shirts made with the slogan ‘Be More Josh’ as we all believe if people were a bit more like he was the world would be a much better place,” said Mr Brown
“Its always nice when we stop or even on the ride meet others and they ask what we are doing, we get to tell the story of the Goochbuster and also spread awareness of sepsis.”
“I remember the one year we rode past a family and the girl shouted ‘It’s the Be More Josh group’.”
This year’s Goochbuster will take place from July 7-11.
The group will be accepting donations via JustGiving and, to donate, visit justgiving.com/fundraising/goochbuster2021
For information on how to spot Sepsis symptoms, visit sepsistrust.org