Wag & Company Coast to Coast 2020

Saturday 13 June 2020 & Sunday 14 June

Want to know more about the event?  Why not browse our event FAQ’s below

“The art and science of asking questions is the source of all knowledge”

The Event

The Wag and Company C2C challenge is by far the most popular long-distance cycle ride in the UK stretching for 128 miles (206 km) and with an impressive 10,600 ft (3,230 meters) of climbing.

The picturesque route departs from Workington on the west coast of Cumbria and crosses the northern edge of the Lake District. It then climbs into the dramatic landscapes of the northern Pennines before descending to the River Tyne and to the finish at the North Sea at Tynemouth.

The reason Wag & Company are hosting this event is because we rely solely on donations and fundraising to run our life-changing service and could not do it without people like you taking part in fundraising events and challenges.

Your fundraising will enable Wag & Company to professionally assess, equip, deploy and support volunteers and their special dogs to befriend older dog lovers – in their own homes or in care or medical establishments – who miss friendship and the company of a dog.

  • Registration open – 20 November 2019
  • Registration closes – 12 January 2020
  • Preparation and training for event – January to June 2020
  • Depart for Workington – 12 June 2020 (pm)
  • Cycle C2C – 13 – 14 June 2020
  • Arrive Tynemouth – 14 June 2020

Please note – if you are making your own way to Workington you need to be there for the start of the event on the morning of 13 June 2020. We’ll confirm an exact departure time closer to the event.

The registration fee includes:

  • Transport – We will provide transport from Tynemouth to Workington the evening before the event.
  • Accommodation – Two nights’ twin or triple room accommodation at cycle friendly hotels or B&Bs.
  • Baggage transfers – We will transfer baggage (one bag up to 15kg) to each destination.
  • Route maps – We will provide route information and gpx files that can be uploaded to an appropriate device (Garmin, smartphone etc.).
  • Group training rides – We will provide training information and markers on where you should be at any given time. We will organise four group training rides between February and May so you can come along, meet other riders and gauge your fitness levels against the training plan.
  • Experienced rider support – We will have experienced cyclists taking part to support you throughout the event.
  • Emergency recovery – A support vehicle will be on hand to get you and your bike to safety if you have a mechanical issue.
  • Cycling jersey – We will provide a Wag branded cycling jersey for you to keep as a memento of the event and your huge achievement.

Public liability insurance is included but it is the responsibility of all participants to ensure they have appropriate levels of travel and personal accident insurances for the event.

Additional costs will include, but are not limited to:

  • Transport – Costs associated with getting to and from the departure and end points in Tynemouth.
  • Meals – Breakfast is included with your accommodation, but lunch and dinner are not however, we will be eating in locations where food is good quality and reasonably priced.
  • Daily consumables – You might want to bring snacks for throughout the day. We will provide some, but they may not be to your personal taste.
  • Insurances – Travel and personal accident insurances.

Yes, Wag & Company follow a strict ‘no helmet, no ride’ policy. You must wear a cycling helmet during all pre-event group training rides and the main cycling event.

Many participants are not experienced when they register to take part however, as they train and build up to the event, they become more experienced.

By the time of the event you will need to be confident enough to ride on open roads and in traffic. If you would like some additional help with this be sure to come along to our pre-event group training rides where we can ride with you and offer general advice and support.

This is a difficult question to answer because everyone is different and their ability to take on a strenuous challenge is affected by many different factors.

The route is extremely challenging and contains a mix of category one, category two and category three hills, as well as many other smaller ones. You can find more information about hill categories here.

With 128 miles (206 km) to cover and10,600 ft (3,230 meters) to climb, it will require a lot of hard work, dedication and a considerable amount of time and training.

The Wag & Company team are here to support you over the phone and by email with all the advice and all the encouragement you need, as well as at the four training rides. These will be organised between February and May so you can come along, meet other riders and gauge your fitness levels against the training schedule. You will be able to ask specific training related questions to cyclists who have ridden the route before.

We will provide a training schedule with markers that will tell you where you should be with your training at any given time in the lead up to the event. We will regularly check in with you directly to see how you are doing, to provide hints and tips on how you might complement your training and to offer specific advice if needed.

You know yourself better than anyone else – if you are unsure whether this sounds like the kind of challenge you would like to take on, please get in touch by emailing enquiries@c2cwagandcompany.co.uk and we will be happy to discuss it further with you.

No, Wag & Company operate a ‘no lone-rider’ policy which means everyone taking part in the event must be riding with at least one, preferably two other riders.

No, the ride will take place on open roads. There will be a mix of quiet country roads and a few sections of relatively busy roads. For those a little less confident on busy roads the support team will be there to ride with you if needed.

Yes, we will provide route maps along with gpx files that can uploaded to an appropriate device (Garmin, smartphone etc.).

We have found the majority of GPS devices are owned by riders in the faster paced groups which can cause problems if you ride at a slower pace. The support team riders will have GPS devices so if you plan to ride with this group, they will navigate the route for you.

For those of you who do not have a GPS device you should print out and familiarise yourself with the route maps – unless you’ve already planned to ride with the support team riders who have a device.

The route will be on hard surfaces (roads and paths) so road bikes, mountain bikes and hybrid bikes are all suitable for the event. You could even do it on a tandem if you like. 

All bikes must be in a good working order and should be checked for suitability before the event. We can help with this when you come along to one of our group training rides or you can get it checked one of many bike servicing companies.

Mountain bikes typically make the ride more difficult because they are heavier and are designed for different terrain. If you plan to use a mountain bike, then we would recommend fitting semi-slick tyres to make it a little easier.

You can use an e-bike; however, it must comply to the following:

  • It must be fitted with pedals that are capable of propelling it
  • The electric motor must not exceed 250 watts

The electrical assistance must cut out when the bike reaches 15.5mph

We do not offer bike hire facilities, however, there are many bike shops and hubs in the area that do. Please get in touch if you would like us to point you in the right direction.

The weather in the UK can be unpredictable, especially ‘up North’, even during summer months. It can also change dramatically and quickly on exposed roads and at the heights you will be cycling. It is best to be prepared for all eventualities, so we recommend bringing a waterproof jacket / coat and plenty of layers in case it is cold, wet and windy, and sunscreen in case the sun decides to make an appearance. Check out our ‘Kit List’ page for detailed information on recommended clothing and equipment.

You do not need to have much mechanical knowledge – ideally, you will be self-sufficient at changing an inner tube if you get a puncture.

All bikes must however be in a good working order and checked for suitability before the event. We can help with this when you come along to one of our group training rides or you can get it checked one of many bike servicing companies.

Yes – you need to bring a basic maintenance kit that includes some spare tubes, a small pump and some tyre levers as a minimum. Check out our ‘Kit List’ page for information on additional optional items that you might like to bring.

The support vehicle will be carrying a small number of spares suitable to repair basic problems. We will have a number of spare tyres and tubes for standard bike / wheel sizes.

Your baggage (1 medium sized holdall / cabin bag – 15kg maximum) will be transported from accommodation to accommodation, and to the finish line.

Transporting baggage home at the end of the ride is your responsibility.

Event costs are kept to a minimum and as such are based on people sharing twin and triple occupancy rooms. Unless you ask for a specific room share (see below) when registering we will allocate separate rooms for male and female riders.

There may be a small number of single occupancy rooms available which can be booked for an additional cost of £25 per night. To enquire about availability please get in touch with us at enquiries@c2cwagandcompany.co.uk.

Please note – single occupancy rooms will be booked and allocated (if available) on a first come first served basis.

Yes – you will be asked about room sharing when registering for the event.

Please note – we will do our best to accommodate rooming requests however there may be instances where this is not possible.

No – no discount on the registration fee will be given to anyone who makes their own accommodation arrangements because accommodation is being booked on a bulk basis and allows for group booking discounts.

No – no discount on the registration fee will be given to anyone who does not require the one-way transfer to Workington.

We will be staying in cycle friendly hotels and B&Bs that have storage areas for bikes, either under cover or in a locked yard. While they provide lockable spaces, we recommend you bring your own bike lock for additional security.

Yes, there will be four pre-event group training rides (February, March, April, May). You will be able to join all rides however; all participants must attend either the March or April ride, so we know you are on track to complete the event safely.

Yes, the C2C bike ride is a serious challenge and we take our duty of care to everyone completing it safely seriously.

We will provide training markers so you know where you should be and by when, and we will be checking in with you regularly to see how you are getting on.

We will use the pre-event group training rides, especially those in March and April (see previous question) to gauge where you are against where you need to be and if needed, we will provide additional advice, hints and tips, and support to get you to where you need to be.

During the ride

A one-way transfer from Tynemouth to Workington will be arranged for late afternoon / early evening on Friday 12 June – you will need to make arrangements to arrive in Tynemouth ready for departure. If you are meeting us in Workington, you will need to make your own arrangements to get there.

The ride will end in Tynemouth – you will need to make arrangements to get from Tynemouth to your final destination. (You probably won’t feel like cycling home!)

Please consider that parking your car in Tynemouth for two days may be expensive (and is not covered by the registration fee), so we would recommend you arrange to be dropped off and picked up at the start and end of the event if possible.

Please note – the specific departure location and time of departure will be provided closer to the event.

The event takes place over two days and involves cycling approximately 65 miles per day. The amount of time it takes depends on several factors including the weather, the average ride pace, the number of breaks (including lunch) needed and fixing any mechanical issues that might occur.

In the worst-case scenario, it could take up to 10 hours per day from start to end however this could be a lot less if everything goes in our favour.

Please note – if you are a proficient cyclist and plan to ride ahead of the main support group you will get to the end a lot quicker.

We have a very unpredictable climate, so this is hard to answer. For most of the year the weather is generally good for cycling, not too warm, or too cold. It is possible to see rain at any time of year, day or night so we always recommend waterproof layers.  Likewise we’ve seen some extremely hot days in June in recent years so we recommend packing the sunscreen too (see our kit list page for more details) and check the met office website for up-to-the-minute weather forecasts from specific regions.

We will have water / sweet snacks available on the support vehicle.

There are plenty of cycle friendly cafes and pubs en-route that will happily allow bathroom breaks however, we will be cycling through some remote areas at times and you may get caught short. If this is the case, there’s always a tree or hedge to go behind. We recommend bringing a pack of pocket tissues.

The event support team have extensive knowledge of maintaining bikes so hopefully it will just be a case of a quick fix and you will be back on your way again. If a major malfunction occurs, and they sometimes do, the support vehicle will make sure you and your bike are transported to a safe location (this may be the final destination of the day depending on when and where it happens). 

Depending on where this is, and whether your bike is repairable to re-join the ride later, you may be required to make you own arrangements to return home.

This varies depending on the individual. You will need to keep hydrated so you will need to carry plenty of water in a reusable bottle. There will be places to stop for lunch and to fill up your water bottles, but you might want to carry a couple of snacks to keep you going in between stops. While you will have access the support vehicle for additional clothing it might not always be immediately on-hand. The weather is unpredictable and can change quickly so you should carry any additional layers that you think you might need. You should also always carry a basic maintenance kit – check out our ‘Kit List’ page for information on what this should include.

Some of our trips pass through remote areas and although there will usually be a phone signal at your overnight location, there may be periods of the trip that do not have coverage.

Yes – there are plenty of cycle friendly cafes and pubs en-route where you can pick up snacks and stop for lunch.

While there will be cash machines and banks along the route, but it is a good idea to bring some cash with you because we will be in remote locations at times.

If you are with the rider support team, they will do what is needed to make sure you are looked after. If, however, you are riding ahead and you become fatigued or injured, find a warm, safe location to wait for back-up and phone the support driver with details of your location. There will be times when we pass through remote areas where you may not be able to get a mobile phone reception. In this instance one of your cycling companions will need to make their way to the nearest phone.

Please note – we operate a strict ‘no lone-rider’ policy which means everyone taking part in the event must be riding with at least one, preferably two other riders.

Yes, absolutely, the more the merrier to help you celebrate your achievement. We usually recommend that once riders arrive at Newcastle Quayside (approx. 11 miles from the end), they contact friends and family to let them know they are getting close to the end– this gives them plenty of time to get to Tynemouth to welcome you in.

Yes – the Tynemouth priory carpark is only a couple of minutes from the end and should hopefully have ample spaces. 

Please note – parking charges will apply.

If, for whatever reason, you find you are unable to take part on the day, and you are already in Workington, please speak to one of the support team directly.

If you are due to join the group in Workington but have not made it there yet, please contact the team to let them know. Contact numbers will be provided closer to the event.

Please note – any monies paid at this time are non-refundable.

Fundraising

When signing up to take part, you’re agreeing to raise a minimum of £500 for Wag & Company. This is a truly wonderful help for us because it will fund almost two Visiting Wag Teams befriending two isolated elderly people.

You must have already raised 80% of the minimum fundraising target no later than two weeks before the event and the remainder no later than two weeks after the event.

Creating your page is really easy. Simply complete the online form (select ‘Organised event’ and the event information will be pre-populated) then click ‘Create your page’. Your page will be created and automatically added to the Wag & Company team page.

Please note – you will need to create an account with JustGiving to have a JustGiving page.

Whilst obviously it’s easier if everything’s done online, and monies will all have to be paid in online (see below), we’ll also provide a downloadable sponsorship form that can be used if necessary, in the office, on reception desks or in other group settings.

No, we are sorry, we prefer to use JustGiving because of the wider benefits it provides e.g. links to social media, improved reporting, the ability to have one main event and the link to our internal systems. We can help with any advice on how to set up your JustGiving page if you’re not sure though.

All fundraising amounts need to be processed online. If you collect cash donations, please process the online donation through JustGiving for the total amount so it is added to your overall total.

We have created a guide with some Fundraising ideas which we will share once you have registered but we also recommend that you use your friends, family and colleagues and your personal network, to support your challenge through sponsorship.  If you have little cycling experience, they will know what a huge challenge it is that you are undertaking. Sharing your progress and showing all the effort you are putting in on an ongoing basis will also help to generate donations.

Using online channels is an easy and effective way of broadcasting to a large network about the challenge you are taking on e.g. social media, such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, or just email. You may want to use these channels to post updates about how your training is going, about why you are taking part in the event and the benefits of Wag & Company visits to the elderly in our communities.  You could even write a blog describing your fitness journey tagging Wag & Company all the while.

A couple of months after you’ve signed up, we’ll check in with you to see how your fundraising is going and help with any advice if you need it.

By signing up to this event you are making a commitment to raise or donate £500 over five months, the most important thing is to start now!  If are having any difficulties at all after a couple of months, get in touch and we can help you think through other fundraising or sponsorship ideas.