Not for Profit

Published: May 12, 2022 | Updated: May 13, 2022

Three Peaks Challenge team far from deflated despite missing target time due to a flat tyre

The Peaky Climbers at the beginning of the Three Peaks Challenge in Scotland.
By Andrew Diprose, editor

They’ve done it.

The Peaky Climbers, including Bridport postie John Foote and colleague Lloyd Cleal, have…climbed three peaks!

Our May 6 story about the challenge.

The nine-strong team notched up around 23 miles (37km) of walking and 3,064 metres (10,052ft) of climbing after tackling the three highest mountains in Scotland, England and Wales.

And although a flat tyre dashed their hopes of pulling off the feat in 24 hours, their achievement left the team from Bridport, Lyme Regis and the surrounding area far from deflated.

John, who turned 46 during the challenge which was aimed at raising awareness and money for Dorset Mind, the county’s own mental health charity, said the tyre episode had cost them around four hours.

He said: “We didn’t have a spare on the minibus, there was no mobile signal to contact the AA and all the garages were closed at that time.

“But we still did the Three Peaks in about 26 hours so we’re pretty pleased.

“I’ve taken part in marathons and other challenges but this was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done.

“I feel totally knackered and we all have a lot of sore knees, joints and muscles.

“But it was a good experience and we all feel a sense of achievement.”

The first mountain tackled by the team was Ben Nevis in Scotland at 4pm on Monday, May 9.

They were faced with atrocious weather conditions, including 80 mph winds, rain, mist and sleet.

But the team still managed to get up – and down – the mountain in just over four hours.

Next stop was Scafell Pike in England.

Once again the weather wasn’t kind – and it’s where the flat tyre became an issue – but they still managed to scale the peak and return in around four hours.

The last mountain – Snowdon in Wales – was reached at 2pm on Tuesday afternoon, just 22 hours after starting the challenge.

“We knew we couldn’t do it within the 24 hours so we just enjoyed it more, taking in the views and also the experience,” said John, pictured left.

Apart from John and Lloyd, the team included Lloyd’s brother, Lee, and Richard Cumpstone of Bridport’s family-run outdoor clothing and footwear shop, The Trading Post.

Other members were Tommy Craven, Charlie Fowler, Richard Lawless, Graham Padget and Joel Wilkins while Shaun Annetts was the driver.

Ages ranged from 21 to 51.

John, who has been a postie for 20 years, thanked everyone for their support and donations.

He said: “We had a lot of good luck messages and some donations came in as well.

“It was a tough challenge but also very rewarding.”

Among those watching the team’s progress with admiration was Linda O’Sullivan, CEO of Dorset Mind, pictured left.

She said: “The Peaky Climbers have illustrated the importance of connecting and also the power of a community that wants to make a difference.

“This challenge was beyond amazing.

“In the words of Tommy Shelby [a fictional character in the TV series Peaky Blinders played by Irish actor Cillian Murphy] ‘Peaky Climbers, Dorset Mind Salutes You!'”

  • To donate to Dorset Mind please click here.