An RSPCA inspector prepared for a trek up Kilimanjaro by climbing three times the height of the Tanzanian peak yesterday – without leaving Norwich.

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John Jenkins hopes to hit the heights for real in February next year as part of a fundraising drive for the charity in Norfolk.

But yesterday the 50-year-old was getting some funds – and fitness – in the bank ahead of his trip by completing a 6,000m uphill treadmill challenge at the Forum in Norwich.

He was joined by fellow RSPCA supporters, who ran a cake stall and tombola and even sold calendars designed by Mr Jenkins.

“It’s been quite tough – we have tried to make it realistic by doing it on a steep incline and keeping the pace as high as possible,” said the married father-of-one.

The trek is just one of the ways in which the inspector is trying to raise the £4,000 he needs to secure his place on the climb with 15 of his colleagues.

He has also organised pub quizzes and taken part in more than 10 car boot sales.

The money will be split between animal welfare work across Norfolk and a fund to provide resources for inspectors.

“I took this on because I like a challenge,” said Mr Jenkins, of Catfield. “But also because I believe in the RSPCA and its cause, and I want to raise as much money as possible for animals. In these difficult times we find that more and more people are abandoning their animals, so it becomes more important than ever.”

To sponsor Mr Jenkins, go to www.justgiving.com/ johnjenkins739

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