Ian Austin MP

Labour MP for Dudley North

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Mission Accomplished: Team Dudley Climb Ben Nevis for Local Charities!

A team led by Dudley Mayor Dave Tyler, former Mayor Councillor Steve Waltho and Dudley North MP Ian Austin travelled to Scotland to climb Ben Nevis on Friday for local charities.

The climbers braved heavy rain and freezing temperatures to scale Britain’s highest summit.

Ben_Nevis_Climbers.jpg

The climbers braved heavy rain and freezing temperatures to scale Britain’s highest summit.

Their annual climb is in memory of Dudley Methodist preacher and mountaineer Bert Bissell who climbed Ben Nevis on VJ Day in 1945 and more than a hundred times afterwards. He lived in Selborne Road and founded the Young Men's Bible Class at Vicar Street in Dudley. He was a probation officer and there is a monument to Bert at Coronation Gardens opposite the Council House.

Team Dudley gathered for a photo at the Peace Cairn Mr Bissell built at the summit.

Other climbers included Rachael Taylor who runs the YMCA’s Open Doors project, Councillor Keiran Casey, Astley Blake who now runs the Bible Class Bert Bissell established, Mayoral Ambassador Shaz Saleem, Black Country Radio’s Ian Marrey and Pastor Barry Hutchinson from Cornerstone Church in Pensnett.

The team has raised well over £2000 for the Mayor’s charities which are mental health charity, Dudley Mind, the YMCA’S Open Doors project which helps homeless young people and Dudley Alzheimer’s Society which supports people with Alzheimer’s.

You can donate here.

Ian Austin said:

“The conditions were horrendous. It was chucking it down and we were soaked and freezing at the summit, but imagine what it must have been like when Bert was climbing without any paths at all and without modern boots and waterproofs!  I’m hoping people will help us make it worthwhile by donating generously to our appeal for the Mayor’s local charities.”

Mayor Dave Tyler said:

"I was very pleased about how well the group worked together to reach the summit whilst at the same time raising much needed funds for my three charities".

Councillor Steve Waltho said:

“The whole trip was about Bert Bissell and the great work he did, keeping the link between Fort William and Dudley and making new friends.”

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