Kindertransport descendants from Leeds trace rescue effort in 600-mile bike ride from Berlin to London

Some of the riders, including James Taylor, Ashley Cohen, Simon Walton, Jeremy Borlant and Jeff Ben Mayor.
Some of the riders, including James Taylor, Ashley Cohen, Simon Walton, Jeremy Borlant and Jeff Ben Mayor.

Descendants of children who were saved from Nazi-controlled states during a famous rescue effort will trace their ancestors’ journeys during a 600-mile bike ride.

Kindertransport helped thousands of youngsters to safety in the build up to the Second World War.

More than 40 riders will cycle from Berlin on Sunday, June 17 and hope to arrive in London on Friday, June 22 to mark the 80th anniversary of the arrival of the first Kindertransport train in the UK, which takes place in December.

Six riders from Leeds will be part of the journey to commemorate the grandparents of James Doyan, Gillie and Henry, who came over on the Kindertransport in 1939. Henry later joined the RAF and served in Burma.

Mr Doyan, Simon Walton, James Taylor, Jeff Ben Mayor, Jeremy Borlant, and Ashley Cohen will take part in the challenge, and have so far raised more than £10,000 for World Jewish Relief.

Mr Cohen said: “All of us know people or families that have had their lived changed through having people saved through the Kindertransport.”

The Kindertransport was a humanitarian programme which ran between November 1938 and September 1939.

Around 10,000 children, the majority of whom were Jewish, were sent from their homes and families in Germany, Austria and Czechoslovakia to Great Britain.

The last group of children from Nazi Germany departed on September 1, 1939, the day its army invaded Poland.

People can contribute to Leeds riders’ fund at https://www.worldjewishrelief.org/leedsberlinbikers.

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