TRIBUTES have been paid to a big hearted biker who raised thousands of pounds for charity after he was diagnosed with cancer. Paul Burbridge from Godmanchester died, aged 56, on Saturday, June 13. He was diagnosed with cancer in January 2007 and given ju

TRIBUTES have been paid to a big hearted biker who raised thousands of pounds for charity after he was diagnosed with cancer.

Paul Burbridge from Godmanchester died, aged 56, on Saturday, June 13.

He was diagnosed with cancer in January 2007 and given just weeks to live, but went on to raise thousands for charity over the next two-and-a-half years.

His son Stuart told The Hunts Post: "The first words he said to us were: 'It's not going to beat me' - and it didn't beat him."

Only two days before his death, Mr Burbridge, a father of three grown up sons, had taken a cricket bat, donated by Hunts Country Bats and signed by the England Cricket Team, to the Odyssey Group, a cancer help centre in Cambridge, to help them raise funds.

The former lorry driver also ran the London Marathon in April, taking seven hours and 20 minutes to complete the course and raising £3,000 for Cancer Research UK.

And in May last year, as part of the Bike Harted Bikers who met at the White Hart pub in Godmanchester, he helped to raise £12,000 for the cancer charity by riding round bike tracks in five countries in seven days.

Stuart added: "My father started raising money for charity in 1985 when he did a parachute jump to help a disabled neighbour. After he had to stop work because he was ill, he put his whole heart into it. He wanted to help other people and he did that right up to the last days of his life. He fought the cancer on very little pain relief, just determination and will.

"He worked hard to provide for us when we were growing up. We never went without anything. We all feel very lucky that in the last two and a half years we have had the chance to say to him what we wanted to say and do things with him that we wanted to do."

Mr Burbridge was born in Hastings and met his wife, Maria, when they were both working in Kingston, Surrey. They moved to Godmanchester after they married in 1974.

Mrs Burbridge, a teaching assistant at Godmanchester Primary School, said: "So many people have written to us with stories of how he helped them. When you are first told you have cancer it is quite a shock for your family and friends. He always thought of other people and he wanted his funeral to be a celebration of his life."

Mr Burbridge also leaves two other sons, Sean and Kevin, and daughters-in-law Amber and Jo.

INFORMATION: Paul Burbridge's funeral will be at St Mary's Church, Godmanchester. on Thursday, June 25 at 1pm. The family have requested no flowers but donations if wished to The Woodlands Centre at Hinchingbrooke Hospital where Mr Burbridge was treated.