Britannia’s Gavin McCarthy smashes Box Hill cycling challenge

Nov 23 | 2021

2021 is the 40th anniversary year for Britannia Movers International, and its Sales Director Gavin McCarthy acknowledged this milestone by completing an ambitious sporting challenge to raise money for charity.

Box Hill bike ride - Tim Watney and Gavin McCarthy leave BMI HQOn 15 October, after months of training, Gavin set off from Britannia’s shipping hub just outside Redhill in Surrey accompanied by Tim Watney from digital agency Chillibyte. The pair received an encouraging send off from all the staff, and began the 15km ride to Box Hill, a challenging climb in the Surrey Hills made famous as part of the 2012 Olympic Road Race.

Gavin had set himself a target of completing 40km in total (to honour the 40th anniversary) and was hoping to include at least three ascents of the iconic hill. The route up Box Hill is around 3km long and bridges 169 vertical metres. The average gradient is 3.9%, with several sections being significantly steeper, so the cycling duo knew that it would be punishing, especially on a drizzly, overcast day.

Box Hill bike ride - Tim Watney and Gavin McCarthy complete the challengeWith just the one break for refreshments, Gavin eventually completed five full ascents totalling an impressive 42km. Tim kept him company for most of the way and wasn’t far behind with four ascents before his legs ran out of power.

The best motivation of all came from the impressive £5,739 that they had raised for Great Ormond Street Hospital, largely thanks to the generosity of removals industry friends, colleagues and Britannia suppliers. But it seems Gavin isn’t quite done with cycling challenges just yet, commenting, “I’ve carried on with the training and have a new challenge lined up for next year. I’ll be cycling up Sa Colobra in Mallorca in May. It’s a mountain in the middle of the island with a 9.4km long climb at an average gradient of 7%, so it makes Box Hill look like a picnic!”

Top: Tim Watney leading Gavin McCarthy as they leave Britannia’s HQ.
Bottom: Tim and Gavin complete the challenge.