The Rickshaw Challenge 2018 – First Stop, Ashford Town Centre

7th November 2018
Paul Brooks

As BBC Children in Need returns next month, with it comes the juggernaut that is The One Show’s Rickshaw Challenge – and the first stop on the new 423 mile route is Ashford town centre!

The Rickshaw Challenge 2018 was announced live during The One Show with a new route, a new rickshaw and a new team. In a first for the annual Challenge, which is now in its eighth year, the route will start in France. A team of six young people, all of whom have been supported by BBC Children in Need funded projects, will be joined by The One Show’s Matt Baker on the eight day challenge.

The Challenge begins on Friday 9 November in Calais, where the team will pedal 31 miles through the service tunnel of the Channel Tunnel – a route only travelled previously by the likes of professional cyclists. Once through the tunnel, the team will head north and arrive in Ashford for their first stop of the journey, where they’ll be welcomed by crowds of well-wishers located by the bandstand in Ashford town centre.

With Pudsey bear due in Ashford town centre from around 6pm, families will have plenty of time to visit for a quick selfie before cheering on the riders as they arrive at the bandstand between 7pm and 7.30pm. And to top it all off, The One Show will be broadcasting live at various intervals, so why not do your bit for charity, bring your donations along and you might get to appear on TV too!

After a well-earned rest, the team will head off from Ashford on Saturday morning, making their way through England and Wales and finishing in Salford on Friday 16 November, during the BBC Children in Need Appeal Show.

Viewers will be able to follow Team Rickshaw’s progress on the show each day, but the full route – including a real-time update of the rickshaw’s progress – is also available at

Cllr Graham Galpin, portfolio holder for the town centre, said: “We’re extremely honoured that Ashford has been chosen to host the first stop of the BBC One Show’s Rickshaw Challenge 2018 on Friday 9 November. Children in Need is a great charity and we’re delighted that the residents of Ashford have the opportunity to come out and support such a great cause.

“It will be wonderful to showcase to BBC viewers what a great community Ashford is and with your support on the night we can do this.”

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