A RETIRED lieutenant colonel is seeking a support corps as he aims to cycle 100 miles to fire up centenary commemorations for the start of the First World War in Rawtenstall.

Brian Pickup, a former commanding officer for the 4th Battalion of the Queens Lancashire Regiment, and well-known for his work with the Community First Responders team, is looking to raise awareness of the town’s Remembrance Parade this Saturday.

The 68-year-old, who is teaming up with Richie Watts, a retired flight sergeant from Waterfoot, in a bid to clock up the distance, said: “Age is just a state of mind.”

He is on the lookout for other keen riders who can take on part of the marathon slog, as static cycles are placed in the town square from 9am.

Dawn Taylor, who has helped to organise the event, said: “The aim is to encourage others to take part in the 100 miles, people can make a donation to participate, either by riding on the day, undertaking a sponsored walk, run, swim, so Brian and Richie do not have to do the lot.”

Several members of Veterans in the Community, the Rossendale-based charity for ex-servicemen and women, will be on to talk to people about the importance of the parade, which will take place on Sunday, November 9.

Dawn and her husband Ken will also be throwing open their garden at Badger Corner, in Brockclough Road, Whitewell Bottom, on August 10, as part of the fundraising.

An entrance fee of £3 will allow visitors to tour their ‘oasis’.