A MAN who has visited 52 countries on his epic journeys to raise money for North Wales charities has written a book about his far-flung adventures.

John Peers, 62, of Bwlchgwyn, has travelled miles across Europe and Asia to raise money for charities, including the Lady Taverners, Cancer Research, children's homes, Blood Bikes and First Responders.

But this year his wanderlust has been curtailed by the global coronavirus pandemic.

But undeterred, he has used the time to pen a book of his previous exploits between 2015 and 2020 to raise funds for Blood Bikes and Community Responders.

In My Adventures with Heroes, Villains and Survivors, John recounts his solo motorbike rides, the places he has visited, and the interesting people he has met including two concentration camp survivors and his own personal hero.

He said: "This year I can't travel so I decided I'd write a book about it all. The book has some sad stories and some hilarious stories, and all the proceeds will be going to the two main charities Blood Bikes and First Responders.

"I've been doing it five years in total and have raised just under £20,000 for all the charities and used three different Honda motorbikes. I've covered just over 32,000 miles, I've gone above the Artic Circle to the north and Azerbaijan in the south and Siberia in the east.

"Russia was the toughest, because there is a big of danger involved."

John Peers of Blood Bikes and Wrexham Rural First Responders.

John Peers of Blood Bikes and Wrexham Rural First Responders.

John likes to visit places with a connection to WW2 or the Cold War

A Second World War buff, John likes to visit historic sites across Europe.

John said: "My major interests in all of this are World War Two history and Cold War history. Among many highlights,one the most interesting places I've been to was when I had a private tour of Schindler's factory in Slovakia. I was lucky enough to meet one of the owners, that was a very interesting day."

John Peers of Blood Bikes and Wrexham Rural First Responders.

John Peers of Blood Bikes and Wrexham Rural First Responders.

John is a Wrexham Rural First Responder

He added: "Another one, which was a huge highlight, was a day inside Chernobyl, within ten metres of where the reactor exploded. The radiation levels are still extremely high and the name of the game there is to keep moving. It was a very interesting and moving place.

"I've also been to almost every concentration camp and two World War Two sites that the people that follow me in Facebook find interesting.

Of the 50 stories in John's book, one is especially close to his heart as it led to him meeting his childhood hero and subsequently to him becoming a Blood Bike rider in North Wales, where he works with NHS Wales to deliver test results and essentials, such as vital blood plasma, and as a qualified First Responder.

John Peers of Blood Bikes and Wrexham Rural First Responders.

John Peers of Blood Bikes and Wrexham Rural First Responders.

The book will be on Amazon but can be obtained from John directly

He added: "Speedway rider Ila Teromaa was my sporting hero. I'm 62 now, and when I was 16 and 17 there was a Finnish rider I followed everywhere. On my very first trip I was going to the Artic Circle and was going to go through Finland, Russia and beyond. Through the wonderful power of Facebook I pinged out a message asking if anyone could help. Twelve hours later I had an email. I sent him an email, I met him and he was a fabulous fella. If you choose your heroes wisely you won't be disappointed. He was an absolute gent, he explained he was going in for an operation to free up some nerves in his back, a straightforward operation. He said come back next year, my back will be better and we'll get on a couple of speedway bikes and have some fun. For me that was like meeting David Beckham and being told you're going to play football with him next year. Unfortunately, two weeks later he died. When I got back from that trip I wanted to do something in his memory. I ended up joining Blood Bikes and raising money to buy a Blood Bike. That bike is still running around North Wales and is named after him and is called Ila Teromaa.

"His family were thrilled to hear that there is a bike in North Wales honouring him. Through Blood Bikes I came into contact with First Responders, so I put everything I'm doing back to him."

John is hoping to make another trip this year that, if all goes to plan, should take about four weeks.

He said: "Later on in the year, we obviously don't know when it will be, I'm hoping to ride from Prague through Ukraine and head towards Mongolia and Kazakhstan.

"You come aware and you rely on advice. I aways take advice from truckers, they'll tell you because they are driving the routes day in day out. I don't want to be a casualty or a liability to the UK Government.

"I have a very sketchy idea, I don't book anything in advance. I'll use Budapest as an example. I woke up there and had a plan to ride into Romania. But ten miles down the road I arrived in a fabulous Medieval village. I fell in love with the place and stayed for two days. But it all honesty you can't plan too much with a motorbike because of the weather.

"I stay in Air B&Bs if I can. The beauty of them is that you're staying with the families that live there, in their home. You're with the family, eating what they eat and seeing how they live."

The book will be available on Amazon soon but for now is available for £10 including package and posting from John at john@johnpeers.com or 01978 758226.