‘Fine tribute’ to cyclist

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The funeral of Mike Atkins, who helped to devise the route of the Guild Wheel, was held today.

Mr Atkins, 70, lost his battle to cancer last month.

Tributes: Mike Atkins

Tributes: Mike Atkins

In a tribute to Mr Atkins, scores of cyclists followed the funeral cortege on their bikes.

One of Mr Atkin’s last wishes was for people to make their way to the funeral in the most environmentally friendly way possible, whether that be cycling, walking on the bus or car sharing.

Cyclists met at The Co-operative Funeral Care in Blackpool Road and set off behind the hearse at 10.30am and travelled to Preston Crematorium for a service at 11.15am.

A minute’s silence was held at Thursday’s full council meeting for Mr Atkins and Ray Ainscough, a former Conservative councillor in the Fishwick ward who died last week.

Preston Council leader Coun Peter Rankin described the cavalcade of bikes as a “fine tribute” to Mr Atkins.

Coun Rankin said: “Mike was a very great cycling enthusiast and he threw himself into the campaign to get the Guild Wheel.

“That’s how I will remember him: a guy who was determined and enthusiastic.”