A BRADFORD City legend is set to make a return to the city when he cheers on a charity bike ride in aid of his charity.

Stephen Darby will be at Valley Parade next month as he welcomes home an eight-strong group of cyclists who are travelling across the country in aid of his Darby Rimmer MND Foundation. The former right-back, now 31, was diagnosed with motor neurone disease in 2018.

The group, which will include his brother Kevin, will visit all of the home grounds of the professional clubs Stephen represented during his career, including the Bantams, who he played for 194 times between 2012 and 2017.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus:

The cycling tour starts at Swindon Town's County Ground on Monday, August 17, before moving on to the home grounds of Notts County, Liverpool, Bolton Wanderers, Rochdale, reaching Valley Parade on Saturday, August 22.

Mark Corrigan, a close friend of Stephen and Kevin, is taking part in the charity ride and has called on Bantams fans to congregate (but from a social distance) when the team reach Bradford and says former skipper Stephen has always enjoyed a special bond with the club's fans.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus:

Mr Corrigan said: "I have known Stephen since he was a baby.

"I think it's amazing and is a testament to Stephen and how highly everyone regards him.

"It's all down to Stephen, people can't do enough to help him.

"The ride is going to be tough, it's about 360 miles over five or six days and works out at about 55 to 60 miles a day. There are eight of us doing it.

"We are stopping at all of the grounds that Stephen played at."

Mr Corrigan, who has had regular contact with Stephen throughout lockdown, says the former Bantams skipper is looking forward to returning to the city.

He added: "Stephen is really well. He has been out walking every day during lockdown. He keeps up his exercise every day. He does not want to sit down much.

"He is in really good spirits. He will come along and support us and be there at Bradford when we finish.

"To have a bit of moral support and to cheer us on would be amazing. The last leg from Rochdale to Bradford is around 28 miles.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus:

"I was there for the Liverpool friendly game at Bradford last year. No-one has a bad word to say against him. Everyone is in his corner.

"He is remarkable. There is never a day when he feels sorry for himself.

"Bradford was where he had the best years of his career. He just absolutely loves the place, the reception he gets. He was always highly regarded there. He loves going back to Bradford.

"He said he had a bond with the Bradford supporters from the very beginning."

"The aim of the ride is to raise money/awareness for the Darby/Rimmer Foundation in the battle to find a cure for the awful disease that is MND."

To make a donation, go to justgiving.com/fundraising/kevin-darby1