A TEACHER is set to embark on a mammoth fundraising challenge in memory of his late wife – with the support of Oxford United.

Rich Baish’s wife, Alex, took her own life after a short battle with postpartum psychosis, a serious mental health illness that can affect someone after having a baby.

Between May 29 and June 2, Baish will cycle from Glasgow, where his wife’s mum was born, through to The Henry Box School in Witney, where she worked as a maths teacher for 12 years.

READ ALSO: Chris Allen discusses his future after resigning as North Leigh manager

Baish will be joined by United first team physiotherapist Andy Caton, a friend of the family.

“We had our second child, Rosie, on September 24 last year. A month later, Alex took her own life and the reason was that she was suffering from postpartum psychosis,” said Baish.

“We’d never heard of this before. It’s a very obscure illness and a lot of people don’t know about it, but there’s a lot of people that do still suffer with it.

“Rather than take it as an incredibly sad moment for me and my family, I want to raise as much awareness of this illness as possible and raise as much money for an amazing charity called Action on Postpartum Psychosis (APP).

“In order to raise that money, Andy and a few of my friends are cycling from just outside Glasgow all the way down to The Henry Box School.

Oxford Mail: Click here to sign up to the Oxford United newsletter Click here to sign up to the Oxford United newsletter (Image: Newsquest)

“We’re going big, we’re going hard and we’re really going for it.

“The amount of people that have reached out on social media has been fantastic, that’s going to be a huge motivation.

“I really don’t want to force people to give money, I’d hate to do that, but even if it’s just going on the APP website or talking to other people, that’s the main thing I want.

“I had no idea that once you’ve had a baby, things might go wrong.

“You’re always told that things are lovely and it’s the most amazing time of your life.

“I just want people to know that it’s an illness that can happen but also that it’s treatable.”

Baish added: “We’ve worked really hard over the last few months and I’ve never prepared physically for anything like this.

“I’ve put in 1,500 miles already and I’m feeling equally excited and scared.”

On the support from the U’s, he said: “I’m so grateful for Andy – he’s been incredible and mapped out the route.

“He’s helping us with so many parts of the practical elements of it.

“The club didn’t have to do this, so the fact they’ve raised awareness, I’m so grateful.”

Symptoms of postpartum psychosis include hallucinations, a low mood, and feeling suspicious or fearful. See a GP immediately if you think you, or someone you know, may have developed symptoms.

Upon publication, Baish had raised £38,000, from a target of £50,000. For more information, and to donate, please visit: justgiving.com/fundraising/richardbaish