A BRAIN tumour survivor who narrowly avoided death is now cycling over 430 miles to Largs for a beach clean.

Kiko Matthews, 38, who broke the female cross Atlantic solo rowing record in 2018, is now aiming to cycle 7,200km of the Great British coastline, participating in over 70 beach cleans along the way.

Linn Van Der Zanden, of Skelmorlie and Wemyss Bay Clean Up Crew, is organising a beach clean in Largs on June 24 at 5pm as one of the stops on Kiko's journey.

Kiko said: "In 2009 I was diagnosed with Cushings Disease, a rare and life-threatening condition which causes tumours on the pituitary gland - the gland that controls the body's hormone production.

"I'd always been motivated by challenge and adventure and in narrowly avoiding death, I got incredibly clear on how I wanted to spend the rest of my life.

"I wanted to live a life of purpose. Doing things that helped people and planet and challenging myself as I did."

Linn was inspired by Kiko's story and decided to get involved.

She said: "I have teamed up with Beth Moon in Largs and John McLesley from the Largs Rowing Club to hopefully get even more volunteers.

"In Skelmorlie we have been doing lots of initiatives around reduction of plastic use as a community, including eco-bricking, growing our own food, climate action days and beach cleans.

"I came across Kiko’s fantastic tour on social media. She is bringing adventure and environmental issues together and making it engaging as a community effort and that is exactly what I’m passionate about as well."

After beating her illness, Kiko set herself the challenge of rowing across the Atlantic on her own in 2018 - however was quickly brought to a halt whilst training.

She said: "Midway through my training, I realised something wasn't right. I went to the doctors and quickly got diagnosed.

"The Cushings was back and I needed a brain op to get rid of it.

"However the tumour was removed and I was out training again in a month."

Kiko went on to row the 21ft-long Soma of Essex for up to 16 hours a day, sleeping in two-hour shifts.

Shaving almost a week off the previous record, she travelled 3,000 nautical miles from Gran Canaria to Barbados in just 49 days.

Now ready to take on her next challenge she will stop off in Largs.

Cycling approximately 60 miles per day for nearly 3 months, Kiko is encouraging all interested cyclists to join, and in particular is reaching out to women to dust off their bikes and helmets and come out and cycle.

She said: “I want to drive home the message that we all need to take responsibility for the planet and that our everyday actions have lasting effects and can't wait to see Scotland and Largs."

Kiko's journey will start in Margate on May 5 and finish back in London on July 28.

Visit www.kikomatthews.co.uk/ride-with-me for more information on how to get involved.