HUNDREDS of volunteers are gearing up to pedal for their parish church at this year’s Ride and Stride event.

The annual fundraising day, which takes place on Saturday, September 10, invites participants to cycle, walk and even ride a horse to all of Dorset’s churches and chapels.

There is no official route and participants seek sponsorship to visit as many churches as they feel able to, or for simply taking part.

Riders and striders will be raising money for the maintenance and repair of Dorset’s historic churches, with all sponsorship split between Dorset Historic Churches Trust (DHCT) and their nominated church.

Chairman of DHCT, Simon Pomeroy, said: “We are looking forward to this year’s event and hope to see many people out and about enjoying the Dorset countryside on the day.

“Last year, we raised an incredible £84,000 in sponsorship with 200 churches taking part.

“We hope even more people will take part this year! Last year’s £84,000 of sponsorship enabled us to award grants last year totalling over £100,000 to keep our lovely churches in use.

“Ride and Stride is a great way for all the family to explore some of Dorset’s wonderful churches whilst raising funds to support their local church and the important work that DHCT does across the county.”

Riders and striders can make their way around over 300 churches across towns and villages, while stopping off at the local pubs and village greens for a summer’s lunch and well-earned rest.

The event, which is organised locally by Dorset Historic Churches Trust, takes place between 10am and 6pm and similar events will take place all over the UK.

Since 1991, the trust has raised over £1million from the Ride and Stride event, formerly known as the Great Cycle Ride.

The trustees award the Morshead Trophy to the parish which they consider to be the most deserving and last year the parish of Sherborne Abbey topped the list with £2,400 raised by the Sherborne riders and striders.

For more information contact Anna Butler on 01305 260004 or email

Visit the DHCT website at