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Three Peaks Challenge Smashes Cash Target

20 May 2016

Shepherding 30 people up and down the three highest mountains in Scotland, England and Wales within the space of 24 hours made for an exacting weekend for Senior Project Accountant Chris Warrington.

Chris, who works on the M6-Heysham Link Road project, was the organiser of a Three Peaks Challenge event – which encompasses ascents of Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike and Mount Snowdon – to raise funds for a close friend who is fighting serious illness.

“He was diagnosed with a rare bone cancer. He has to have six months of chemotherapy, then have a leg amputated, followed by another six months of chemo.

“He did a lot of charity work in the form of running, swimming and cycling and the aim is to help the guy buy a prosthetic leg that he can run with.”

Chris, a keen walker and climber, was out climbing with a group of friends when they decided to do something tangible to help.

“Prosthetic limbs supplied by the NHS are fairly basic. Getting the type that would be suitable for running costs around £40,000 for a good one. We set up this group with a target of raising £10,000 towards it.”

Chris and a colleague had the task of not only undertaking the challenge themselves but also ensuring the remainder of the party completed the trek safely, by acting as guides and checking that nobody became separated from the group. This was more difficult than it seems, as the group members had widely varying degrees of experience and ability.

The event started on a mid-April Friday morning with a drive of almost six hours to Ben Nevis, near Fort William on the northwest coast of Scotland.

The climb of the UK’s highest peak took around five hours, after which it was back to the minibuses for the 5½-hour drive south to Scafell Pike in the Lake District.

“By this time it was around 11pm, so we did Scafell Pike in the dark,” said Chris. The ascent involved Chris having to retrace his steps around 300 feet back down the mountain at one point to shepherd the least-experienced group upwards and ensure they didn’t get lost in the dark.

Then, it was another four-hour drive to Snowdon, which was “the busiest mountain I’ve ever seen. We were literally queuing to get up it.

“We were blessed with the weather. It was glorious on top of Ben Nevis. On Scafell, the cloud didn’t come down fully, which was fortunate because if you’re in the dark and the cloud comes down, you’re in trouble. Snowdon was clear on top.”

The good news is that, to date, the event has already shattered the target figure, raising £15,500, with an estimated extra £1000 to add to the figure once final pledges come in.


Caption: Chris Warrington (centre of photo above banner, in blue jacket and green hat) organised and helped guide the 30-strong group up three mountains.


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