The world’s oldest person to cycle from Land’s End to John O’Groats repeated the 874-mile journey months later after learning he wasn’t old enough to claim the record.

Laurence Brophy was 87 when he rode the length of Great Britain last year in a bid to enter the history books but was unaware 87-year-old Donald Wells had completed the journey the previous year.

Determined not to be undone, the grandfather-of-five pedalled the country’s roads once again after his 88th birthday in order to become the oldest definitively.

Mr Brophy, a former marathon runner, told how he slept rough for most of the trek which saw him bed down in tents, on roadsides and even hay bales in farms.

He said: "I found out that someone the same age as me had already completed it. But I knew I could be the oldest. I know if I give myself a target like that, I’ll stick to it – and I did."

Mr Brophy repeated the feat earlier this year

Credit: SWNS

The retired teacher, from Pencoed, South Wales, set off in August to cycle the length of Great Britain.

Beginning at his home, he cycled south to Land’s End in Cornwall before spending 25 days riding to John O’Groats in northern Scotland.

Mr Brophy, who goes by the nickname ‘Laurie’, raised £6,050 Llamau, a homeless charity which supports vulnerable women and children across Wales.

To raise further awareness of homelessness, he spent almost every night of his challenge sleeping rough.

Mr Brophy spent his working life teaching at local primary and secondary schools, as well as raising two daughters, Katy and Samantha, with his wife Ruth.

Despite now holding the title as the oldest man known to have completed the cycle from Land’s End to John O’Groats, Laurie only began cycling a few years ago.

Laurie said: "I’ve had a bike for a long time but I only used it for little journeys, to trundle around on or go to the shops. It’s only been in the past few years I’ve started cycling longer journeys, because I’m too old to run now."

The 88-year-old said he was already planning his next challenge.