| 12.7°C Dublin

Families get on their bikes for Roche

CYCLING hero Stephen Roche joined thousands of families in Kildare on a get-fit challenge to raise money for cancer research throughout Leinster counties.

The 1987 Tour de France winner kicked off the Loop of Leinster charity cycle at St Laurences GAA club, Narraghmore, Co Kildare.

The legendary cyclist organised the event in aid of the National Breast Cancer Research Institute the local community complex.

A cycle sportive is an organised and supervised group cycle on a pre-arranged route.

Participation in cycling, and in particular cycle sportives, has enjoyed massive increases in numbers over the past five years.

The Leinster Loop event consisted of four distinct routes, the Leinster Loop - a challenging 140 km cycle through south Kildare, Laois, Kilkenny and Carlow; the Barrow Challenge - a testing 90 km cycle through Kildare, Laois and Carlow; the Cill Dara Cruise - a 50 km cycle and the Roche Ramble - a 12 km leisure cycle through south Kildare and open to individuals and families.

Meanwhile, hundreds of families made the most of the sunshine pockets at Malahide Castle at the Wonderfest.

The weekend event included live music performances, theatre, circus workshops, dance classes and plenty of food offerings.

The festival was created with parents and children in mind.

Alcohol consumption at the two-day event was strictly limited to the "Parent's Tea-Party" area.

The organisers provided camping in a deluxe area designed for families to enjoy time together, with full facilities on site.