A MARATHON cycle team which has raised nearly a quarter of million pounds for charity were given a heroes welcome on Saturday as they returned from an epic 1500 ride.

The RockRide 2 squad was cheered on by a reception committee at Adams Park in High Wycombe.

The cyclists battled searing temperatures across Spain and France as they trekked more than 1500 miles from Gibraltar to Bucks.

The reception, attended by hundreds of wellwishers, was headed up by Gordon Robertson, head of Marlow and Bucks Freemasons who welcomed three fellow members in the riding team.

Representatives of the 21 lodges and 10 chapters at the Masonic Centre in St Peter Street converged to congratulate Gavin Lannen, Andy Collins and Christopher Lieu, along with 12 other riders.

Mr Lieu said: “I was touched by the generosity of my colleagues at the Marlow Masonic Centre who readily offered to help me.

“It makes such a difference, when you are riding, even if you are hot, sweaty, and about to give up. The supporters’ confidence and moral support gives you the extra spark to keep going. ”

The team raised funds for a variety of good causes, including the services’ welfare charity, SSAFA, the Thames Valley Air Ambulance, and in the Bucks Masonic Benevolent Fund.

The riders have already raised more than £240 000 for their chosen good causes and hope the final figure will increase substantially.