Final goodbye for cycling centenarian

14:04 20 May 2014

Billie Fleming passed away shortly after her 100th birthday.

Billie Fleming passed away shortly after her 100th birthday.

Archant

Billie Fleming passed away on Monday with her family by her side just a month after milestone birthday.

Billie when she cycled 39,000 miles around the UK.Billie when she cycled 39,000 miles around the UK.

A CENTENARIAN who cycled 30,000 miles around Great Britain in a year and inspired generations has died just a month after her 100th birthday.

Billie Fleming, wife of the late George Fleming, who was the first man to cycle 50 miles in less than two hours, celebrated the milestone birthday in April.

She passed away at North Devon District Hospital on Monday, May 12 with her family by her side but leaves behind her a legacy of ‘girl power’.

Her stepson Peter Samwell said Billie was an ‘amazing lady’ who was thrilled to have reached her 100th birthday and be featured in the North Devon Gazette.

He said: “Billie’s passing at the age of 100 after a short illness is a sad occasion for her family and friends but I am certain that Billie would not want people to mourn but instead to use her death as a source of inspiration to carry on cycling.

“For her, death is probably no more than a puncture in life’s cycling journey, and now she can be reunited with her beloved husband, my father, George Fleming who passed away in 1997.

“Fortunately Billie reached her goal of getting to 100 and she was so pleased to have been interviewed by Sarah at the North Devon Gazette about her 1938 world record of cycling 29,604 miles in one year.

“Just this morning I opened Billie’s mail and read a letter from a 41 year-old mum who took up road cycling last year.

“She said that to her, Billie was the original ‘Girl Power’ and how she has been inspired to clock up the miles this year.

“What better epitaph could Billie ask for than to have inspired future generations of cyclists?”

Arrangements for Billie’s funeral are still ongoing but Billie’s family has asked for donations to The Cornwall Leukaemia Trust in lieu of flowers.

Other News Stories

Volunteers and trustees from the NDCCCT handing over the cheque for £300,000.

Final cheque for £300,000 from North Devon Cancer Care Centre Trust brings Chemo Appeal to its fundraising total.

Read more
Fire engines2

Three fire engines were called out to Hobbs Hill this morning (Tuesday).

Read more
Katy Quick with two of the young girls she met in Palestine.

Science teacher Katy Quick spent a week visiting children in the West Bank and is now fundraising for Edukid.

Read more
11:00
Westward Ho!

Village parade will take place on Saturday in Westward Ho! with families asked to take part.

Read more
Yesterday, 17:12
The loss of Zebedee has hit staff at Combe Martin Wildlife and Dinosaur Park hard.

Staff distraught as long term resident Zebedee dies aged 29

Read more
Yesterday, 15:14

Fire fighters called out to assist with unstable scaffolding on Arlington Hotel.

Read more
Yesterday, 13:24

Developers seek to turn part of the pub into housing with new application

Read more
Yesterday, 11:35
Gale force winds are forecast for the festive week ahead.

Region can expect strong gusts in exposed and coastal areas through tonight (Monday) and tomorrow.

Read more
Yesterday, 10:36

Fire fighters received reports of a boiler exploding at Swimbridge property on Saturday.

Read more
Yesterday, 10:04
The proposed hotel in Westward Ho!

Councillors will once again be deciding the fate of the luxury £3million development proposals for Westward Ho!

Read more

Local Weather

Overcast

Overcast

max temp: 9°C

min temp: 5°C

Most Read News

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
Competitions
North Devon Football League
Order Photos
Family notices
iwitness24
Facebook
Twitter
Google Plus Page
Family Notices 24

Digital Edition

Image
Read the North Devon Gazette e-edition today E-edition



North Devon's trusted business finder