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Bishop Condry gives up car for Lent

07 March 2014


To the wheel: Dr Condry outside Salisbury Cathedral

To the wheel: Dr Condry outside Salisbury Cathedral

THE "bicycling bishop" is getting back on his machine again.

The Bishop of Ramsbury, Dr Edward Condry, who in 2012 cycled 1500 miles from Olympiain Greece to the London Olympic stadium in 15 days, is giving upthe episcopal motor for Lent.

He drives 1500 miles a monthto visit parishes in his Wiltshire patch, and, because many of them are rural, and public transport is limited, he will be relying on pedal power for much of his travelling.

"It was the usual thing: you ask 'What can I give up for Lent?' I hate giving up chocolate cakes: I am totally useless at it; so I thought I would do something about a subject that really concerns me: climate change," Dr Condry said on Tuesday.

"I think Christians must take their responsibilities to look after God's creation very seriously. The Church of England in the south-west has a regional commitment to cutting carbon emissions during Lent 2014. So, giving up the car made sense."

The Bishop, who is 60, runs, cycles, and rows to keep fit, and hopes to take most of his trips in his stride; but one, a 22-mile night-time ride home across Salisbury Plain, has required careful planning. "I need to be really careful, and make sure I have all the right sort of gear," he said.

His biggest problem will be attending early Sunday services. "Trains and buses don't run on Sunday mornings, and somehow you have got to get a cassock, a mitre, and a pastoral staff on a bicycle." He plans to borrow a specially small crozier from the Bishop of Salisbury.


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