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Motorcycle adventurers return

PUBLISHED: 10:46 17 October 2008 | UPDATED: 09:16 11 May 2010

Paddy Hall and Andy Swallow out in Africa

Paddy Hall and Andy Swallow out in Africa

AFTER eight days riding virtually non-stop across some of Africa's most challenging terrain it was not only the homecoming that was tender for two motorcycling adventurers.

AFTER eight days riding virtually non-stop across some of Africa's most challenging terrain it was not only the homecoming that was tender for two motorcycling adventurers.

Paddy Hall and Andy Swallow touched down at Heathrow on Monday for their first full day on two feet after endless hours on two wheels.

And this week the pair were still glowing from the goodwill radiating from people at home and in South Africa following their 1500km fundraising journey.

Mr Hall, 43, who runs corporate events company Paddy Hall Presents in Southtown Road and his transport manager Mr Swallow, 35, from Norwich, were part of an 86 strong charity team who have raised an estimated £300,000 over two Enduro Africa events with Princes William and Harry picking up the baton for the second leg.

Local fundraising and sponsorship raised around £5000 towards the trip with the riders putting in the rest.

The twelve day trip included eight days of solid riding for around 10 hours a day. Mr Hall said it was “extremely uncomfortable” with most riders standing on their pegs to ease the pain. Among his team of 17 there were plenty of bruises and a few broken bones. He added that one experienced rider was hospitalised after she collided with a cow which then fell on top of her.

The journey was a personal and charity challenge that delivered a full spectrum of emotions.

“Everyday was difficult to deal with in some ways. It was a huge experience and it put things into perspective. These people have got absolutely nothing but they are still happy. As we rode across the country people literally came out of mud huts to wave at us. We took packs of crayons for the children and they were very friendly and so happy.”

Blistering hot days were followed by cold nights under canvas amid terrific thunderstorms or in coastal hotels. Mr Hall, a married father of four, said he was also amazed and heartened by the support from local people attending the fundraising events and donating raffle prizes.

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