PEDAL power is set to raise thousands of pounds to pay for a guide dog to help the blind.

A team of 21 members of Les Slinn Personal Training are gearing up to cycle from London to Paris in a bid to raise £5,000 for Swindon Guide Dogs.

The money will be used to pay for a puppy’s first year of training and they will also get the chance to name the dog.

Les said: “We all took a vote out of 14 charities and Swindon Guide Dogs came out top.

“It is good to help a charity locally. A guide dog would help someone immediately. We have never raised funds for the charity before so we thought it would be a good one to do.

“We have helped Swindon Down’s Syndrome Group and the MS Therapy Centre in the past. It’s time for us to help someone else.

“Our focus is to name a guide dog, which we need to raise £5,000 for. If everyone raises £250 each we can do it.

“Raising money for charity gives people a focus when they are training and the money they raise helps local people as well.”

The group will start cycling on July 17 and will finish in Paris on July 21.

“All the guys are training hard at the moment to get their fitness levels up,” said Les.

“We have men and women of all ages and abilities taking part. We have got people who thought they would never be able to do this sort of thing involved.

“The first part of the challenge, which is in England, is quite hilly. When we get to France there are a few inclines.”

Chairman of Swindon Guide Dogs, Alan Fletcher, said: “It is absolutely brilliant that they are doing this for us.”

To sponsor the group visit Swindon Guide Dogs are also looking for volunteers to look after puppies during their first year of training.

Anyone interested in volunteering should phone 0845 371 7771.