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The Cycling Seamstress, overcomes stitches to live up to her name

When Maria Wright set up her bespoke sewing and alterations business over 15 years ago little did she know that the name she chose would more than live up to its expectation.  Maria was a recreational cyclist, pottering through the villages around Hurstbourne Tarrant collecting and delivering her sewing, rarely cycling further than 5 miles a week.  Instantly recognisable,  as she always had her Jack Russell x Patterdale, Barney, sitting in the front basket enjoying the ride.  Now, however, Maria cuts a different figure cycling over 100 miles a week and plans to cycle 100 miles in a day to raise money for Prostate Cancer UK at the end of October.

When lockdown hit Maria was part of a production team that made scrubs and masks for the North Hampshire Medical Trust. She said “it was important for me to put my skills to good use to help the wider community, there were still alterations to be done especially as many of my customers had the opportunity to thoroughly go through their wardrobes and to look to reuse and repurpose their clothes.”  Adapting clothes that may have slightly gone out of fashion or no longer fit rather than putting into land fill is something Maria feels passionately about.  Likewise, supporting the charity Prostate Cancer UK, due to the prevalence of Prostate Cancer amongst her friends and family.  She decided to use any spare time she had over the summer to get fit and healthy and what better place to start than on her bike!

Maria, together with her cycling partner Jeremy Stafford-Smith, planned to cycle around the Isle of Wight this summer.  To aid training not only did Maria travel further afield with her sewing deliveries she used Walbury Hill, the highest natural point in SE England, as her regular training ground.  When travel restrictions halted their trip, they were undeterred and overcame stitches, to cycle the length of the circumference of the IOW through Hampshire and Berkshire. 

The cycling bug is here to stay and now the Cycling Seamstress plans to cycle through North Hampshire and West Berkshire completing 100 miles in one day to raise money for Prostate Cancer UK.  She has had to make a few alterations herself, sadly Barney is no longer with her and the journey and terrain is far too much for her new Welsh Terrier, Ella.  It seems, with all the cycling, Maria has put her money where her mouth is, The Cycling Seamstress has also had to alter and adapt most of her clothes too over the summer!

Should you wish to donate or sponsor Maria, The Cycling Seamstress, further details can be found on www.justgiving.com/fundraising/maria-wright9 or get in touch via email thecyclingseamstress@gmail.com

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