AN intrepid adventurer is preparing to cycle 400km through Vietnam and Cambodia to raise money for a hospice that looked after her mum.

Denise Dooley, 56, of Charter Crescent, Ellesmere Port, is no stranger to a tough bike ride – but reckons this trek may prove the most punishing yet.

She is hoping to raise £3,000 for the Hospice of the Good Shepherd, where her mum Catherine spent time three years ago before she died.

“The heat and humidity are going to make things tough!” she said. “But the thing that keeps me going is that none of it can be as bad as what some of the people using the hospice have to go through.

“The work that goes on there is just incredible.”

Denise is a member of the Wirral Coast Riders club, which she says prides itself on sociable cycling that often includes “banter, chin-wagging, butties and cake”.

She has been stepping up her training ahead of her charity ride on November 11 cycling every day and taking on extra spin classes.

Her mum had been very independent and looked after her dad Denis after he suffered brain damage until he died in 2012.

Initially reluctant to go to a hospice, Catherine soon changed her mind after a visit to the impressive Backford site.

“The care and attention on offer there is just unbelievable,” said Denise. “They listen to every word you say and people get to be with others in similar situations. It meant mum had people to socialise with and didn’t have to be on her own. They do all sorts of activities too, like therapies and crafts.

“She wanted to be there at the end. They did so much for her at the hospice, I just want to give something back.”

To sponsor Denise, visit