Cookie's getting on his bike for charity

Ed Cooke is saddling up for an 100-mile charitable bike ride.
Ed Cooke is saddling up for an 100-mile charitable bike ride.

A Daventry council worker is saddling up for an arduous 100-mile bike ride in support of the Meningitis Now charity.

Ed Cooke, the environmental health manager at Daventry District Council, is taking on the RideLondon-Surrey 100 event on Sunday, August 4, in the hope of raising £750 for the cause.

The 50-year-old's efforts are in support of his father-in-law Gavin, who still experiences the long-term effects of a bout of meningitis he suffered more than 20 years ago.

Gavin was initially diagnosed with gastroenteritis, but further tests revealed he had the rare streptococcus suis type II meningitis. Thankfully he went on to make a good recovery, but has been left with partial hearing loss and chronic joint pain

“An earlier diagnosis may have helped to reduce the long-term effects,” explained Ed. “That’s why I’m so passionate about fundraising for Meningitis Now, to support their research and awareness work.”

Meningitis is an inflammation of the membranes that surround and protect the brain and spinal cord, usually caused by bacteria or viruses.

The Meningitis Now charity funds research into vaccines and prevention, raises awareness so people know what to look for and what action to take if they suspect meningitis, as well as providing support to people living with the impact of the disease.

Ed – or ‘Cookie’ - is joining the charity’s #TeamTangerine group who will be taking on the road race next month.

Setting off from Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, the event follows the route of the 2012 Olympics road race, taking in famous London landmarks as well as Surrey’s spectacular countryside -- including the gruelling Box Hill climb.

Kirsty Owen-Hayward, the events fundraiser at Meningitis Now, said: “We’d like to thank Ed for joining our #TeamTangerine for the RideLondon-Surrey challenge and everything he’s doing to support our work.

“We wish him well with his training and on the day itself. His efforts will make a real difference to those who are at risk from meningitis and those whose lives have already been changed forever because of it.”

To support Ed, visit his fundraising website at