The fastest woman to cycle the globe came to visit Aberfeldy last week, inspiring school pupils to consider ways to get active, particularly girls.
World champion athlete Jenny Graham – who holds the world record for best female time cycling round the world – was welcomed to the Highland Perthshire town by children from Breadalbane Academy, local wild swimmers and canoeists.
Jenny is promoting active travel, using adventure to inspire more people to be everyday active.
She is undertaking the ‘From Source to Sea’ mission with Lee Craigie, the active nation commissioner for Scotland and director of the Adventure Syndicate.
Beginning on Monday, September 6 from Glasgow Queen Street Station, the team travelled to Crianlarich on ScotRail’s new bike-friendly Explorer Carriage in search of the source of the Tay in the Grampian hills.
Covering an average of 30km a day, over the following days their excursion by bike and boat took them through Perthshire, exploring the length of the river, to finish at Dundee.
The project, promoting “the personal, social and environmental benefits we all stand to gain if we choose to travel even the occasional short distance by foot or wheel,” saw them cover the length of the River Tay without stepping into a car.
Their hope was to educate school children along the way.
On Tuesday last week they enjoyed a rapturous welcome to Aberfeldy, home of Breadalbane Academy and a community currently attempting to be ‘Scotland’s Healthiest Town’.
Knowing Jenny and Lee were coming to visit, school children and individuals had been encouraged to match their active miles in their everyday journeys to work or school.
Pupils from Breadalbane Academy recorded their self-propelled journeys to school all last week and uploaded them to a live interactive map via The Adventure Syndicate’s app.
For part of the trip the duo followed the River Tay from Kenmore, putting their bikes onto a specially-designed pack raft which brought them to the bank below Wade’s Bridge and the Black Watch Memorial in Aberfeldy.
Sabina Laurie (10) was in a kayak with Jenny and another Breadalbane pupil – aptly named Tay Will – travelled in the boat from Kenmore with Lee.
Arriving in the town soon after school finished, there were other boats in the water to meet Jenny and Lee as Breadalbane Canoe Club paddled over to say hello.
Blessed with September sunshine, the Breadalbane Academy Parent Council (BAPC) unfurled a welcome banner and offered to refuel the travellers with treats from their impromptu bake stall.
Lee said: “We can all get very hung up on ‘doing the right thing’ when it comes to our health and averting our climate crisis, but we hope our Source to Sea adventures