This year's date: Sunday 6 October 2019
The Viking Challenge marks a major event every year in the school's calendar, especially as it is our primary fund raising activity.
Taking place on the first Sunday in October, the off road cycling challenge raises essential money for our school, and a chosen charity, through sponsorship and generous donations.
Also see: Viking Challenge Update - January 2019 (pdf)
How It Started
In 1995 the staff and parents of Redmile CofE School decided that it would be more effective to organise one big fund raising event than having lots of small ones across the school year (as is typical in many schools).
A parent from Redmile came up with the idea of using the local section of the Viking Way, an ancient track-way originally linking Newark and Stamford, as a means of raising much-needed funds for the school.
In the first year 98 cyclists completed the circuit, raising £580 – and so The Viking Challenge was born. However no one could have guessed then just how big it would get.
The Viking Challenge Today - An Event to be Proud Of
Off they go!
The Viking Challenge:
- Attracts over 1,250 riders from all over the country;
- Is one of the UK's largest amateur off road cycle events;
- Has raised over £350,000 for the school and our charity partners since it began in 1995;
- Needs over 150 volunteers to run and man the event on the day;
- Serves nearly 5,000 cakes, bananas and chocolate bars to keep cyclists fuelled up on the way round!
The event is open to everyone, young and old, teams and individuals, both serious and fun cyclists - and Vikings! The combination of the serious physical challenge with our warm hospitality has proven to be a winning formula; with riders and volunteers coming back year after year.
Taking in the fabulous Vale of Belvoir countryside riders have access to terrain not usually accessible to the general public and with lots of well-stocked refuelling stops along the way – our cakes are almost as famous as the challenge itself – it really is a unique cycling experience.
Our small village primary school benefits enormously from the funds raised through the Viking Challenge.
In recent years, the opportunities to enrich the curriculum have been immense with weekly Spanish, swimming, dance and music lessons, visiting dancers and puppeteers and many school trips just a few of the activities funded by monies raised.
The money raised in 2012 funded a new learning resource area. The 2013 and 2014 events supported an upgrade to the IT equipment used by pupils by purchasing iPads and laptop computers. Funds raised in 2015/2016 contributed to the creation of a cooking room and additional iPads for use by pupils. In 2016/17, money was used specifically for Spanish lessons and a new storage shed for PE equipment. Our focus for 2017/18 will centre around the development of a new classroom and playground area.
Each year we choose a charity partner to whom half of the total monies raised are given. Often the charity is suggested by a parent, or local resident and charities that have benefited include: Multiple Sclerosis Society, Imperial Cancer Research Fund, National Meningitis Trust, Cystic Fibrosis Trust, Leukaemia Research Fund, Mencap, NSPCC, Macmillan Cancer Relief, Help the Hospices, When You Wish Upon A Star, Hearing Dogs for Deaf People and The Kinder Trust.
The Viking Challenge Committee
A diverse group of interested people including parents and villagers, past and present, the Headteacher from the school and a charity representative form the Viking Challenge Committee and are responsible for the organisation of each year's event.
If you are interested in joining the committee, we would love to hear from you. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Want to know more? Please visit: www.vikingchallenge.org.uk (external link).
Also see: Easy Viking Challenge Cake Recipes (pdf)
Hundreds of cakes waiting for hungry cyclists.
Complete the course and receive a signed certificate from Headteacher Mrs Hopkins.
Busy early morning registering for the Viking Challenge..
Support the Viking Challenge and wear a Viking Challenge t-shirt.
More cyclists off on their way, taking on the Viking Challenge.
Smiley cyclists looking forward to the Viking Challenge.
Even real Vikings ride the Viking Challenge.
Yummy cakes after all the hard work!