From Peloponnese to Norwich: A Brit’s Epic Bicycle Ride for Health Awareness

It has taken 30 years, but a Norwich man is attempting an epic 2,000-mile return bike ride from Greece to Norfolk. Paul Strong, 55, has embarked on a cycle ride from mainland Greece to the Norwich Lanes, raising money for charity en route.

Paul Strong, 55; who splits his year between Mill Hill Road in Norwich and the Peloponnese in Greece, has started his tough challenge in aid of Movember – which highlights men’s health issues.

Mr Strong; a former lecturer of economics history who did two weeks worth of training, was diagnosed with prostate cancer in April 2017 but received the all-clear in September.

He started his ride in Koroni, Greece, and has reached Calerno on the Amalfi Coast in Italy after cycling 700 miles. The 55-year-old aims to end his challenge at the Birdcage pub on Norwich Lanes, at the end of November.

Paul’s journey takes him from Greece through Italy then Corsica and then follows the rivers Rhone, Loire and Seine through France before taking a ferry from Dieppe to Newhaven on the East Sussex coast.

From there he will cycle to London, crossing both Westminster and Tower bridges, and then he will ride cross country back to Norwich and the Lanes, for a well-deserved pint at the Birdcage Pub.

Mr Strong has been joined by his middle daughter, Katie Strong, 20, from Norwich, for part of the Italian stretch which he said was “wonderful”.

Paul actually cycled from Norwich to Greece in 1987, albeit using a different route and on what he describes as “a rickety old bike.”

Back then, he nearly met disaster several times, collapsing of exhaustion in Calabria in Italy (only to be rescued by local villagers), arrested in Tunisia and avoiding the war in Algeria by no more than a few days.

He even made a diary of his travels and all the adventures, but some 30 years on, he is hoping not to repeat them again.