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Torbay RNLI volunteers leave to climb Mount Kilimanjaro

Lifeboats News Release

Our eight Torbay RNLI crew who are climbing Kilimanjaro, were given a very warm send off yesterday. The sun shone and there was a great turnout at Torbay RNLI boat station to wave off their minivan taking them and their kit up to Gatwick.

Team leader, Ian (‘Barney’) Barnaby, asked about the challenge of climbing the 5,895 metres to the summit of the world’s tallest freestanding mountain, replied; ‘I'm sure teamwork, resilience and shear mindedness will help us and each other, make it to the summit.’

The team, whose average age is 60, have been training hard over the winter. But will that be enough? Barney explained; ‘Obviously the one thing we can't train for is the altitude and it is inevitable that we will all get altitude sickness but hopefully only mildly. It will also be very cold on the summit, -15 to -20. The challenge whilst hard physically will be as tough, if not tougher, mentally. But we will do it.’

Their itinerary has the lads starting their week-long ascent on Sunday 12th February via the longer Northern Route. The plan is to complete the last stage to the summit on Sunday 19th. You can follow their up-to-the-minute progress on Twitter (@rnlitorbay), or go to our Facebook page RNLITorbay, where a video and diary will be posted at the end of each day.

For more information and to donate you can visit the fundraising page

Many local companies and individuals have very generously sponsored and donated to the Challenges over the last 12 months. The crew have largely financed themselves, their travel expenses and their kit to complete these Challenges, which means all money contributed has gone - and will go - to the local Torbay lifeboat station.

The event’s lead sponsor is Interline, a Torbay based builders’ merchant who service the southwest of England and have contributed significantly towards preparatory logistical and fundraising costs. Helly Hansen has also made a significant contribution towards the specialist mountain-climbing clothing needed.

Notes to editors

Photos - attached you’ll find some images of the eight climbers, credited to Nigel Millard.

RNLI/Nigel Millard

The Torbay team set to climb

Key facts about the RNLI

The RNLI charity saves lives at sea. Its volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service around the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland coasts. The RNLI operates 238 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and more than 240 lifeguard units on beaches around the UK and Channel Islands. The RNLI is independent of Coastguard and government and depends on voluntary donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824, its lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved over 142,700 lives.

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For more information please visit the RNLI website or Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. News releases, videos and photos are available on the News Centre.

Contacting the RNLI - public enquiries

Members of the public may contact the RNLI on 0300 300 9990 (UK) or 1800 991802 (Ireland) or by email.