The Revd. Paul Harford (vicar of Bishop Thornton, Burnt Yates, Markington, Ripley, and South Stainley) and his wife Sarah Harford will be walking the National Three Peaks Challenge to raise money for Martin House Children’s Hospice. As part of a small group they will climb Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike, and Snowdon – the tallest mountains in Scotland, England, and Wales, with a combined height of over 11,000 feet – within 24 hours. Setting off from Martin House at 5am on Thursday 8th April, they should start the ascent of Ben Nevis, the first of the three, at 5pm that evening. Some of the climb, and the next mountain, will need to take place through the night adding to the challenge.
Martin House cares for babies, children and young people with life-limiting conditions from across West, North and East Yorkshire. Its support includes planned respite stays, symptom control, emergency care, end of life care and bereavement support. Sarah and Paul’s link to the hospice comes through friends, and its not the first time they’ve raised money for them, though this is their biggest challenge to date.
The climbs are daunting enough, but add in the night navigation, the lack of sleep, and the threat of your legs seizing up in the minibus between the mountains, and I think you’ve got something really ‘special’. At one of the training hikes, Phil, the event coordinator, told us, ‘make discomfort your companion’. But we know that when we get to the end everything will be alright, and we’ll be able to recover; we’re doing this for the families who sadly don’t have that certainty for their children.
Every year Martin House cares for more than 440 children and their families, as well as around 150 bereaved families, at its hospice, in hospitals and in the community. It is open 24/7, 365 days a year, whenever families need help and support.
It costs nearly £9 million a year to provide this care, the majority of which comes from voluntary donations and fundraising. More information about Martin House is available at its website, www.martinhouse.org.uk
You can sponsor Paul and Sarah by visiting www.justgiving.com/paulandsarah3peaks