Pudsey and Team Rickshaw at Kelpies

Crowds braved the rain to welcome BBC Children in Need’s Team Rickshaw challenge to the Kelpies today.

Pudsey Bear was in town, along with a special group of young people and TV presenter Matt Baker, who are covering a 500 mile route to raise funds for the charity.

They left London on November 9 and have cycled across the country and are due in Glasgow tonight during BBC Children in Need’s 2017 Appeal Show.

Their whistle-stop visit to the Helix Park and Kelpies was part of the final leg of their mammoth journey which saw them leave Edinburgh this morning, travelling through Linlithgow, Polmont, Laurieston, Falkirk, Camelon, Bonnybridge and Banknock as they head west.

Pedalling the rickshaw in Falkirk was Shona (17) from Inverness.

At age 15 Shona was diagnosed with Nieman Pick Type C - a rare neurodegenerative condition that causes her difficulty with movement, talking and eating. Although she knows her condition may worsen, she is positive and optimistic about life. Niemann-Pick UK, a project funded by BBC Children in Need, has been a lifeline to Shona and her family, giving them practical and emotional support throughout her diagnosis.

The One Show’s Matt Baker is cycling alongside the team throughout the challenge, whilst co-presenter Alex Jones follows their every move and cheers the team on, live from the studio.

As they prepared to leave the Helix he admitted that the last couple of days had been tough but the Rickshaw Challenge, now in its seventh year, was a personal highlight for him.

To date the challenge has raised over £16 million and the team are hoping this year’s efforts will help secure another strong total.