A solicitor from Barnoldswick has returned from a mammoth charity cycle trip to India that raised more than £1,500.

Sara Jane Chorkley, 47, spent two weeks on her bike raising money for health charity LEPRA, which works to fight disease, poverty and prejudice in the subcontinent.

She was one of 12 cyclists from the UK who tackled the 500km route in the state of Madhya Pradesh.

Sara Jane, a graduate of the University of Central Lancashire, said: “It was a real eye-opener sharing a room en route not only with my fellow cyclists, but also with a rat, two frogs and any number of geckos!”

Sara Jane accompanied a LEPRA health education van to project sites on the route.

In some villages, hundreds of people turned out to welcome the charity workers.

They also planted a custard apple tree in her honour high up on a hill in Madhya Pradesh.

Sara Jane said: “Meeting the people LEPRA is helping was very humbling. It was so hard to see people living in such poverty and hearing about the prejudice they face. It was a very emotionally tiring trip, but I loved it.”

LEPRA’s events coordinator Lizzie Dearling said: “In addition to the direct services we provide on the frontline, we focus on the people affected by some of the world’s oldest diseases associated with poverty.”

Each year LEPRA reaches more than one million people with life-saving health information and improves the lives of a further 700,000 people affected by disease.