An Olympic, world and Commonwealth cycling champion joined hundreds of riders in a ride through several local villages at the weekend.

Nicole Cooke was one of 800 cyclists to set off from Land’s End on Saturday for the 960-mile Ride Across Britain.

Their journey will finish at John O’Groats on Sunday. The nine-day Ride Across Britain took the cyclists through Wedmore, Mark and East Huntspill on Sunday and Cheddar Gorge.

The riders are averaging around 108 miles a day, and will climb around 15,000m in total, which is twice the height of Mount Everest.

Nicole Cooke, who retired from professional cycling in 2013, won a gold medal at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing.

The Deloitte Ride Across Britain is one of the UK’s top cycling fundraisers. Since it launched in 2010, it has raised more than £1.5 million for the British Paralympic Association and matched this for other charities, making a total in excess of £3 million.

Now in its sixth year, the event is widely recognised as the UK’s premier long distance cycling event and it takes cyclists of all levels of fitness and ability through some of the country’s most breath-taking landscapes.

Nick Tuppen, Managing Director of Threshold Sports, which organises the event, said: “Last year 93% of participants in the Deloitte Ride Across Britain rated it as one of the best experiences of their lives.”

“It really is one of the greatest sportives this country has to offer with a stunning route, unrivalled logistical support and enormous camaraderie.”

“We have cyclists from all over the world with a range of backgrounds and cycling and fitness abilities aiming to complete the challenge and discover our mantra that more is in you.”