Weybridge local raises nearly £40,000 for Cancer Research UK
CELEBRITIES, sports stars and scientists have given their backing to teams of intrepid hikers who have completed one of the greatest mountain challenges in Great Britain – conquering the ‘Wainwrights’.
Twenty teams, led by Richard Truett from Weybridge, scrambled up 214 fells (hills and mountains) in the Lake District in 48 hours, raising a phenomenal £37,000 for Cancer Research UK.
Singer Ronan Keating and TV presenters Gaby Logan, Jim Rosenthal and Tony Jardine were among the famous names to send the teams good luck video messages.
Richard, a former fashion model who now works in finance, came up with the idea for Lakeland 214, after losing his mum Marcia to cancer last year.
“Mum had survived breast cancer 10 or 15 years ago. But in 2020 she developed lung cancer which went to stage 4 and she had a lesion on her brain. We lost her in February last year - she was a compassionate and considerate, ‘young’ 74-year-old with a great sense of humour.
“I’d had type 1 diabetes since I was two-years-old and she got me through all that but in her time of need, I was immensely frustrated there was nothing I could do for her. I’m not medically trained but realised raising extra funding for those who are is the best way we can contribute to beat cancer.”
Richard spent nearly 12 months planning the routes around the 214 mountains and recruiting 20 teams of three to eight people, of all ages and from all walks of life and all around over the UK and beyond. Each team took on between 10 and 14 peaks.
The Lakeland 214 challenge covers 512 kilometers with a total ascent of 36,000 meters, including standing on the highest peak, Scafell Pike, is the equivalent of scaling Mount Everest four times.
“This was a unique, difficult and amazing challenge,” said Richard. “It was a massive ask of people and I am absolutely chuffed to bits with what we have done and the money we have raised for Cancer Research UK.
“It’s a phenomenal achievement and we’d love to get to our fundraising to the £40,000 mark, so it would be fantastic if people could help us do that.
“While we were on the fells, we met several people who had lost someone to cancer or who had been through it themselves. They scanned the QR codes on our bags and donated, which was fantastic. We bumped into one lady who had survived lung cancer two years previously and she had come up the toughest side of Clough Head.”
The weather conditions on day one of the event were extremely challenging.
Around 58,5000 people are diagnosed with cancer in the South East each year.
Sue Tiplady, fundraising manager for Cancer Research UK said: “We never stop being amazed, thrilled and grateful to people who take on a challenge for Cancer Research UK.
“We are so grateful to Richard Truett for creating this fundraising challenge and to all the teams who joined him to “bag” all 214 Wainwrights in just 48 hours.
“The £37,000 the teams have raised will enable Cancer Research UK to make more discoveries, drive more progress and bring hope to more families affected by cancer.”
Richard said the experience and the positive feedback from the teams, plus the amount of money raised for Cancer Research UK’s life-saving work, had made him think about repeating the event in some way.
“It brought people together in an amazing way – there was friendship, the beauty of a World Heritage Site, a sense of fulfilment and of course a great, common cause, so it was a fantastic experience.”