Hertfordshire man's Everest climb for Help for Heroes

PUBLISHED: 09:15 24 December 2011

Ben Burton while climbing up Everest

Ben Burton while climbing up Everest

Archant

INJURED war heroes inspired Ben Burton as he climbed to the Mount Everest Base Camp with the former soldiers.

The Cuffley worker arrived back home awe-inspired after he climbed 17,700ft as part of a group, which included war-wounded servicemen, to raise funds for Help For Heroes.

Ben, who collected more than £8,240, told the Welwyn Hatfield Times things were put into perspective as while he struggled for a “bit of breath” he watched his companions struggle to walk.

He added: “The main thing I will take away from the 
experience was meeting the 
people I did.

“There was a real bond with all of us and a sense of team work.

“We all worked together to try and stay positive whether you were having a bad day or whatever, just to make sure we reached the top.”

During the 14-day trek the 35-year-old, who was in a group of 27, endured temperatures of around -12C and battled extreme changes in altitude, which was the biggest “problem” he said.

“We took the trek fairly slowly over a number of days and when you look at it we weren’t always walking that far, but the altitude can really knacker you, at times we were working against 50 per cent oxygen.

“It was easier on the way down though and the bit that really stood out for me was looking back up the mountain – at that point you realise ‘I’ve just climbed to Everest Base Camp’.

“It does start to sink in of what an achievement it is.”

Ben works for Ellis Training Works and to celebrate the Sopers Road company’s 20th anniversary staff have been donating to the charity.

The development manager at the air conditioning, gas and refrigeration training firm said the year of fundraising has given him an opportunity and purpose to fulfil his ambition of climbing Everest.

He joked his next mission would be somewhere “a lot hotter – perhaps the Inca Trail, as I’ve had enough of the cold; trekking and even sleeping in freezing conditions every day gets a little wearing!”

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