Trio's epic cycle ride for donkey charity
Three friends are to cycle 1,000km across Japan to raise money for an international donkey charity.
Shane Herbert, Mick Lay and Marc Johnston, of Braunstone, Leicester, are in training for the challenging ride from Tokyo to Hiroshima.
They hope to raise £10,000 for the charity, inspired by Shane's aunt.
Shane said: "The ride will be a huge challenge and I'm sure there will be a lot of blisters and sore legs to deal with.
"I decided to set the trip up to raise funds for The Donkey Sanctuary in memory of my aunt, who passed away last year.
"One of my earliest memories is of visiting her home and marvelling at the huge number of fridge magnets she had in her kitchen, particularly those from The Donkey Sanctuary."
The trio visited the charity's headquarters in Sidmouth in Devon last month to look at the work it undertakes.
It was founded in 1969 and now supports projects to relieve the suffering of donkeys in 28 countries.
The charity has major projects in Egypt, Ethiopia, India, Kenya and Mexico, where donkey welfare has been improved through education and veterinary work.
In this country, it works with special needs and provides therapeutic visits for elderly people from its centres in Sidmouth, Manchester, Ivybridge, Birmingham and Belfast. The trio are hoping to raise £10,000 by pedalling along a route which will take them round Mount Fuji.
Shane said it was the first fund-raising event of this kind they had undertaken but they were all looking forward to it.
Charity spokeswoman Suzi Chetney said: "We are delighted that the young men have chosen to support us in such an imaginative way.
"We have not had anyone volunteer to pedal such a long distance across Japan before.
"We are dependant on contributions from the public and every penny is spent on promoting the welfare of donkeys."
People can monitor blogs each day during the cycle ride by visiting:
Anyone who wants to donate can visit:
For more information on the charity, visit: