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Go Gracie! Six-year-old cycling 200 miles to raise money for hospice which cares for her sister

By Lisa O'Brien | Newtown | Health | Published:

A six-year-old girl is cycling 200 miles to raise money for a hospice as a thank you for helping to care for her big sister - and has so far raised a staggering £1,800.

Gracie Knowles, her dad Chris and sister Erin

Gracie Knowles is pedalling her little legs off alongside her dad Chris on cycle paths near her Newtown home.

Her sister Lily, who is now 10, was born with a life-threatening condition and has been visiting Hope House at Oswestry for respite care for the last eight years. The hospice also provides sibling support to Gracie and her younger sisters Erin, three, and Emilie, two.

Their mum, Vicky, says Hope House is a lifeline, and the staff at the hospice have become part of their extended family.

Gracie Knowles celebrates her first 100 miles

“Lily laps up every ounce of one-on-one attention she gets and you can see the excitement in her face when we arrive," she said.

"Their nurses are trained to the highest level and we have total peace of mind that Lily’s care and medical needs are in the best of hands during her stays.

“Lily’s respite at Hope House enables us to catch up on some much needed sleep and allows us to do the things with her three sisters that aren’t possible with Lily.

“They once had Lily to stay for two weeks while her baby sister was in hospital with meningitis.

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"Their crisis care is always there, so they are an absolute lifeline to us and many other families.”

Adventure

Gracie, who is a pupil at Penygloddfa Primary School, also loves visiting Hope House and enjoys activities and days out with the sibling support team, Mary and Brian.

She says: "I love to play with the toys in Hope House and I like to have a day out with Mary and Brian.

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"We miss Lily when she stays at Hope House but we get to spend lots of time with Mummy and Daddy.”

Gracie’s cycling adventure started when she decided she wanted to do something for Hope House during lockdown to thank the charity for everything they do.

She set her goal at 100 miles for June and got cycling.

When she smashed the 100-mile mark she decided to set herself a 200-mile goal and is expected to finish on Sunday.

Vicky added: “She has really enjoyed the challenge and has been keen to get going whatever the weather.”

“We would just like to say a huge thank you to all the family and friends who have sponsored Gracie, including my best friend Leri Lane who has also ran a 50-mile lockdown challenge and raised another £480 for Hope House. Everyone has been simply amazing.”

To sponsor Gracie visit facebook.com/donate/310656353434011/ and find out more about Leri’s challenge at justgiving.com/fundraising/leri-lane50junelockdown

Lisa O'Brien

By Lisa O'Brien
Senior Reporter - @lisaobrien_Star

Senior reporter based at Shropshire Star's head office in Ketley. Covering the Telford area.

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