Ride For Plunkett challenge raises £3,800

The Ride for Plunkett


Team Thakeham successfully complete ‘Ride For Plunkett’ cycling challenge raising nearly £4000 for local community businesses.


On Monday the 10th of October, a team of Thakeham’s biggest cycling enthusiasts embarked on a 53.3 mile route between our Head Office, Billingshurst and our Thames Valley Office, Wokingham.

The route took our riders through all terrains and incorporated visits to three established community-owned businesses in Slinfold, Wonersh and Shackleford that have received the support of the Plunkett Foundation to become staple shops in their local communities.

Team Thakeham had the opportunity to meet the community business representatives and learn more about the benefits and struggles of having a community-owned business.


Ride For Plunkett


John Stebbings, Managing Director of Thakeham Strategic, said:

Taking part in Ride for Plunkett was a brilliant opportunity to combine a huge team challenge with one of our key social value goals as an organisation – building local communities. Visiting local community businesses along our route gave us a great lift as we tackled this event and an understanding of why raising funds for one of Thakeham’s long-term charity partners, the Plunkett Foundation, is so important to support their ongoing good work in our communities. A challenging but rewarding day in the saddle!

For Thakeham, Rob Boughton, CEO said:

The ‘Ride for Plunkett’ Cycling Challenge is a wonderful event that will raise awareness for the very best community businesses in the region. I’m particularly proud that the Thakeham team has chosen to support our key charity partner – The Plunkett Foundation.

Together Plunkett Foundation and Thakeham Homes are creating community businesses within new Thakeham developments across the South East of England. We share a vision of creating vibrant, resilient and sustainable places to live and work by empowering communities through community business.

If we can raise awareness, and even a little money along the way, we can help communities to help themselves through inspiring even more community business success.

For Plunkett, Gemma Sills, Engagement Manager at Plunkett Foundation said:

Plunkett is incredibly grateful to the team at Thakeham for supporting rural communities with their ‘Ride for Plunkett‘ sponsored bike ride challenge. The community shops the team will visit along their 53-mile route are just three of more than 800 rural community businesses that Plunkett has helped to set-up and run in recent years. Thanks to Thakeham’s generous efforts, even more communities will be able to benefit from Plunkett’s guidance and support that will empower them to do the same. In addition, their invaluable fundraising will help ensure that Plunkett can be on hand to offer vital support to community groups over the coming months, as they face extremely challenging times in light of the current energy crisis.


Alongside individual fundraising efforts, everyone collaborated as a team to bring forward exciting ideas and activities. This included a Sweepstake where colleagues could compete for bragging rights as they put forward estimates on how long the journey would  take. The winning time on the sweepstake was 7 hours 52 minutes from Johnny Broscombe – congratulations!

Thanks to the riders and support teams efforts, Team Thakeham managed to raise an incredible £3,896 for the Plunkett Foundation. This amount will ensure that more local community businesses can join the 600+ other businesses that Plunkett had supported to set-up and run.

With a 53.3 mile ride ahead, Team Thakeham expected the unexpected! Chain breaks, crashes, fatigue and of course a selection of different terrain all came into play to test the riders spirit.

Despite this Team Thakeham managed to cover the total course in 8 hours 27 minutes of which 5 hrs 20 minutes was riding time. Our amazing support team accompanied the riders every step of the way offering help where needed, their constant motivation, passion and support, gave our riders the extra push to keep going.

If you’ve been inspired by the ‘Ride for Plunkett’ challenge, or perhaps your company is looking for its next corporate challenge, you can get in touch with fundraising@plunkett.co.uk to get your idea off the ground!

Ride For Plunkett


The Ride

Caspar Atherton, Group Marketing Coordinator said:

53.3 miles of off-road cycling was certainly a bigger challenge than expected. But we worked as a team and didn’t leave anyone behind, despite multiple punctures and steep hills. Meeting the proud owners and local customers of community shops, who attested to the value of these businesses and the Plunkett Foundations support, made it all worthwhile. We crossed the finish line with tired legs, a few cuts and bruises – but all smiles

Ride For Plunkett Ride For Plunkett


Our Journey with Plunkett

A Pioneering Partnership

The journey with Plunkett started back in 2020 when Thakeham commissioned the Plunkett foundation to establish new community trusts at the very heart of their developments.

The Plunkett Foundation helped Thakeham establish a model on how to create community trusts that are vibrant, resilient and sustainable places to live and work.

95% of Community trust businesses have a long-term success rate, which speaks for itself in how important local services are to bring communities together.

Rural Community Business Awards

Thakeham is also sponsoring the Community Contribution category in this Year’s Rural Community Business Awards 2022. The annual Rural Community Business Awards celebrate the UK’s community-owned business sector and are organised by The Plunkett Foundation.

The award recognises UK individuals involved in community-owned businesses, who are going that extra mile for their community.

The Walk for Plunkett 

The Ride for Plunkett is not the first time Thakeham have come together to support this amazing charity.

Last year the Volunteers across the Thakeham family walked over 155 miles to support communities across the UK who need Plunkett’s help to save a local shop, pub, farmland, or woodland through community ownership.

The Woodgate Hub 

Through teamwork and collaboration, Thakeham and Plunkett are working towards bringing a state of the art  community hub at our flagship Pease Pottage development.

Plunkett has been on hand at every step to help build the community, engage with local residents to ensure the hub flourishes on completion and echo the community values that underpin the ethos of the whole development.

About the Plunkett Foundation

The Plunkett Foundation has over 100 years experience in supporting and establishing community businesses across the UK. The community business model has a current 95% long-term survival rate, proving it to be a resilient model to provide and retain vital local services that bring a community together.


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