Three Warwickshire friends are among more than 50 intrepid fundraisers set to conquer Ben Nevis en masse this month in aid of local children’s charity Molly Ollys.
Organiser Alex Myers, from Stratford will lead the group, which includes Rob Horsfall from Welford and James Lennon from Leamington, as they tackle the 4,400ft climb on April 22nd.
It marks a return to the UK’s highest peak for Alex who works as a personal trainer and runs The Better Man project which offers emotional and physical support for men seeking to make improvements to their life.
The 38-year-old said: “I’ve done a series of challenges from charity boxing matches, to climbing all Three Peaks in 24 hours but I’ve never got people from all over the UK to climb Ben Nevis. The challenge for me this time is to get 50 people up and down the mountain safely. I wanted other people to achieve something on a personal level that will also benefit others.”
“This is a huge deal for a lot of people, the vast majority for whom this will be the first time doing something like this.”
He added: “When it comes to gratitude and purpose, there is nothing more impactful you can do than embrace the struggle and sacrifice your own comfort for the benefit of those less fortunate than you. The world needs stronger people because those people do good – and that way we have a chance of taking care of the people who really need our strength.”
Despite growing up in Scotland, the 8.5-mile challenge of scaling Ben Nevis will be a first for experienced climber Rob Horsfall, 45.
Rob, who has already conquered the Yorkshire Three Peaks, said: “I know only too well how bad the weather can be in Scotland. We need to make sure we don’t leave anyone behind because there will be a range of abilities, including people who haven’t done anything like this before. It’s about looking out for each other – especially as the weather is an unknown – and making sure everyone gets over the line.”
Ben Nevis is a first for experienced climber James Lennon, who has been stepping up his gym training to be the ‘peak’ of fitness.
He said: “The biggest challenge for this is going to be keeping everyone together but also maintaining a good pace. If you go too fast too quickly you end up stopping but that is the worst thing you can do. You just have to keep on moving.
“When you go up the mountains with people you share those memories for a long time. It’s a great way to spend your weekend doing something positive that’s also for a good cause.”
Warwick-based Molly Ollys was established following the death of Rachel and Tim Ollerenshaw’s eight-year-old daughter Molly from a rare kidney cancer and marked its tenth anniversary last year.
The charity supports children with life-threatening illnesses and their families. It helps with emotional support and donates wishes, therapeutic toys and books to children directly and through hospitals across the UK.
Since Molly Ollys started more than £3 million has been raised to emotionally support children across the UK. Anyone wishing to donate can do so here
Rachel Ollerenshaw said: “This climb is very much about team work and supporting each other in a challenging situation. It is very much how Molly Olly works, as a team with other organisations and health professionals to support children with life- threatening illnesses and their families.
“Alex took time to really understand our work and we are very grateful to him and everyone who has signed up to help make a difference. Our work would not be possible without the kindness and generosity of our donors. We wish them all good luck.”
To sponsor visit here
You can register to take part in the climb here