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Injured soldiers complete bike ride

Michael Swain, left, who lost both his legs and Paul Jacobs who lost his sight while they both served in Afghanistan
Michael Swain, left, who lost both his legs and Paul Jacobs who lost his sight while they both served in Afghanistan
Michael Swain cuddles his baby son Max, aged four weeks, after finishing a 500-mile charity bike ride from Edinburgh to central London
Michael Swain cuddles his baby son Max, aged four weeks, after finishing a 500-mile charity bike ride from Edinburgh to central London


Published: 7:31pm, 25th September 2011
Updated: 9:48pm, 25th September 2011

Two injured soldiers have completed a 500-mile cycle which has seen them ride from Edinburgh to London to raise money for charity.

Riflemen Michael Swain and Paul Jacobs, who were both injured in Afghanistan, were part of a group of 30 cyclists riding to raise money for armed forces support charity SSAFA Forces Help's Ride of Britain.

They set off from Edinburgh Castle on September 21 and took five days to arrive at Horse Guards Parade in central London.

Rifleman Swain, 21, from 3 Rifles, completed the ride on a hand bike, having lost his legs in a roadside bomb explosion in Afghanistan in 2009.

He said: "I put in a lot of training beforehand, but the first two days were really tough because of the weather and hilly terrain. From then on it was fantastic and also brilliant to be cycling with two lads who I serve with in 3 Rifles."

Rifleman Jacobs, 22, from 2 Rifles, was blinded in 2009 by a blast as he tried to save a comrade.

He completed the Ride of Britain on a tandem bike with his brother.

He said: "Admittedly, the first day was a hard one. Our chain broke, the weather was dreadful and the hills were huge. Despite this I had a fantastic time.

"There were some incredible cyclists here - we all got along famously and had great banter."

He added: "SSAFA Forces Help has helped me and I wanted to give something back to them and tell people about the work they do." A spokeswoman for SSAFA Forces Help said that the charity hoped to have raised at least £40,000 through the Ride of Britain.

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