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Ex-journalist to ride across Himalayas

A former regional daily journalist is gearing up for a tough cycling challenge in the foothills of the Himalayas to raise funds for a cancer charity.

Stan Arnaud will join a group of around 60 cyclists on the gruelling 508km ride from Amritsar, Northern India, through the mountainous state of Himachal Pradesh to Shimla in October for Macmillan Cancer Support.

It will be the third overseas cycling challenge in four years for Stan who has worked for regional papers in Aberdeen, Derby, Newcastle-upon-Tyne and the Glasgow offices of several national titles.

The 49-year-old cycled 680km from Panama to Nicaragua in 2010 and two years ago he completed a 550km ride from Kenya to Tanzania.

Stan is taking on his third cycling challenge in four years

“Although shorter than the other challenges I’ve done, the altitude and terrain are definitely going to make it the toughest yet,” he said.

“There is a lot of hard training to be done, as well as fundraising, between now and 18 October when we set off.

“Like many people who take part in these kinds of charity fundraising activities I have strong personal reasons for doing so.

“In my case it is in recognition of the fantastic support Macmillan has provided for my family when we have needed it most.”

Stan, who is now an account director with a PR consultancy, is committed to raising £4,000 for the latest challenge.

The group of cyclists has already amassed more than £40,000 for Macmillan – a figure that will swell to hundreds of thousands of pounds by the time they have completed the trip.

The father-of-two’s 15-year career in journalism started in the mid-1980s in Scotland on the Banffshire Herald, in Keith.

He spent two spells with Aberdeen Journals, initially with the Aberdeen Herald & Post then the Evening Express and latterly as Highland news editor of the Press & Journal.

He also worked at the Derby Evening Telegraph and with North News and Pictures press agency in Newcastle-upon-Tyne.

National titles he worked for in Scotland include the Sunday Times, the Daily Mail and the Daily Express.

Donations to Stan’s fundraising drive can be made by clicking here.