A KIND truck driver will get on his bike for a marathon effort in aid of a good cause that’s close to his heart.

George Grice hopes to raise more than £1,000 for the British Heart Foundation which has helped halve the number of people dying from heart and circulatory disease in the UK since its foundation more than 60 years ago.

But the 25-year-old, who works for McCarthy Distribution in Wrexham, said sadly every day hundreds of people lose their lives.

George’s grandparents on both sides of the family have suffered from heart problems in the past and he is keen to help out the life-saving charity.

He will climb onto a spin bike at the Q Fitness gym not far from his workplace at McCarthy Distribution on Wrexham Industrial Estate on September 4 and ride for 10 hours non-stop, taking just one 15-minute comfort break during that time.

According to George, the gym owner, Harry Barratt, is also planning to do the ride with him and anyone else who would like to join in for an hour or so are welcome to do so.

He said: “It’s only thanks to support from people like us that the BHF can create new treatments and discover new cures.

“Just £24 could pay for two hours of research by an early career scientist, but every pound helps so please give what you can to help me hit my target.”.

The father of a seven-month old baby girl, Fallon, added. “My family have had heart problems and heart conditions for years, my grandparents especially.

“My grandad had a triple heart bypass operation and the British Heart Foundation has always been a big thing for myself and my family. We always try and do a little bit for the British Heart Foundation and I just want to give something back.

“I’ve always wanted to do something for charity and I’ve been thinking about this for months. I like doing spin classes so I thought, that’s it, I’ll do 10 hours on a spin bike.”

George explained a spin bike is different to an exercise bike which many people might have at home.

McCarthy Distribution; Pictured charity fund raiser George Grice . Picture Mandy Jones

“It’s called a spin bike because it has a wheel and the resistance can be changed just like when you’re going up a hill. With an exercise bike it’s a more relaxed kind of machine and doesn’t have a wheel, just a belt,” he said.

A fitness fanatic George visits the gym five or six times a week and is a qualified personal trainer.

He began working in various gyms in Wrexham from when he was 19 years of age but gave that job up when the Covid-19 pandemic struck and all gyms were closed down. It was then he chose to change career and trained to be a lorry driver.

Donations to that page – www.justgiving.com/George-Grice1.com – have already started to flow in and include a £50 donation from the company plus donations from colleagues.

“They’re a great company to work for. I passed my Class 2 HGV test and started with McCarthy in March last year and now drive one of their 18–ton lorries all over North Wales delivering palletised goods to businesses and individuals.

“It’s a great job and I get to see all the magnificent countryside of North Wales,” he said.

George has recently passed his Class 1 HGV test and is now able to drive articulated trucks weighing up to 45 tons.

Managing director Mike McCarthy said: “We have a great team at McCarthy Distribution and George is a lovely guy with a heart of gold.

“We’re very proud that he is taking on such a mammoth challenge for such a good cause.

“But he’s a very fit young man and has a lot of personal motivation so I am sure he will absolutely smash it.”

The British Heart Foundation was founded in 1961 by a group of medical professionals who were concerned about the increasing death rate from cardiovascular disease. They wanted to fund extra research into the causes, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of heart and circulatory diseases.

It is a major funder and authority in cardiovascular research, education, and care, and relies predominantly on voluntary donations to meet its aims. In order to increase income and maximise the impact of its work, it also works with other organisations to combat premature death and disability from cardiovascular disease. BHF fundraising events, such as the one being organised by George, accounted for nearly £54m of income in 2019-20.

Since the BHF was established, the annual number of deaths from heart and circulatory diseases in the UK has fallen by around half. Around 1.4 million people alive in the UK today have survived a heart attack but healthcare costs relating to heart and circulatory diseases are estimated at £9 billion each year.