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Are we there yet? Leeds team travels the world in black cab for charity

From left, Paul Archer, Johno Ellison and Leigh Purnell at Mount Everest Base Camp.

From left, Paul Archer, Johno Ellison and Leigh Purnell at Mount Everest Base Camp.

  • by Juliette Bains
 

Three friends are hoping to smash four Guinness World Records during the longest taxi ride of their lives.

Johno Ellison, from Boston Spa, and friends Paul Archer and Leigh Purnell, have already clocked up 32,000 miles and travelled through 41 countries in their 19-year-old black taxi to raise £20,000 for charity.

But after last-minute funding from smartphone app Get Taxi, they are now extending their expedition to 45,000 miles.

The journey will break four records including the longest ever journey by taxi, the first cab to circumnavigate the globe and earning the highest fare, which will be an estimated £80,000 by the time the cab arrives at Portsmouth docks in May.

The team set off from London last year and travelled through Europe, North Africa, the Middle East, Mongolia, China and South East Asia before ending in Australia.

Johno, 28, a former pupil of St Aidan’s School in Harrogate, said: “By the time we got to Australia, we were exhausted but knew we had to accept the challenge to complete the journey around the world.

“We hope she will be running well and we’re looking forward to starting out on the next leg.

“She even got fumigated before leaving Australia so it will smell a darn sight better when we start out again in a couple of weeks.”

The taxi will now be shipped from Sydney to San Francisco, where the team will hop aboard to drive to New York via California, Utah, Texas and 20 different states.

They are expected to arrive in New York by March, when the taxi will be flown across the Atlantic to Tel Aviv.

The team will clock up another 6,000 miles as they drive through Israel and eastern Europe to Russia before heading to Spain and France.

The Get Taxi: It’s on the Meter expedition is set to raise more than £20,000 for the Red Cross Society.

To keep track of the taxi or to donate to their fundraising, visit: www.justgiving.com/itsonthemeter

 

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