Two men one mountain: Friends from Yarmouth and North Walsham to scale Africa’s highest peak

Jonathan Grimsey and Martin Fairchild who are scaling Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa.

Jonathan Grimsey and Martin Fairchild who are scaling Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa. - Credit: Archant

Tackling his own health and fitness issues after his father died seemed like the summit of his achievements.

But having lost five stone Jonathan Grimsey needed more than a metaphorical mountain to conquer.

Now the 30-year-old is planning an adventurous ascent of Mount Kilimanjaro, Africa's tallest peak - which he is dedicating to his dad.

It will be a fundraising and physical challenge for him and his friend Martin Fairchild, from North Walsham, who will brave its steep flanks together.

Proceeds from the climb will be donated to the Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation, as a thank you for the limitless support it gave while Mr Grimsey's father Nigel was terminally ill.

Nigel Grimsey who sadly died of lung cancer aged 56.

Nigel Grimsey who sadly died of lung cancer aged 56. - Credit: Jonathan Grimsey


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His father's death at just 56 had a profound effect on all the family, who have embraced the charity's anti-smoking message and set about matching its soaring support with towering challenges.

His mother Bridget, spurred on by his memory, walked the Great Wall of China raising a good sum and encouraging Mr Grimsey to see what feat he could achieve.

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Now he and Mr Fairchild, also 30, are training for the 11-day trek that will take them through rainforest to the 6000m summit.

First however they will take on the gruelling three-peaks challenge scaling Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike and Snowdon in 24 hours in July.

Martin Fairchild on his wedding day with Jonathan Grimsey, his mother Bridget and father Nigel who s

Martin Fairchild on his wedding day with Jonathan Grimsey, his mother Bridget and father Nigel who sadly died aged 56. - Credit: Jonathan Grimsey

Mr Grimsey, a carwash service engineer who has a partner Becky and three children between them, said: 'One of the biggest problems will be my history of asthma. Trying to overcome that, the ascent, and lack of oxygen plus the possibility of altitude sickness could be difficult.'

He is dedicating the climb to his father who died in February 2012, just three months after the devastating diagnosis.

Having toyed with different ideas he realised he could do the trek through the same company that helped his mum to take on her charity feat.

It meant he could follow in the footsteps of Radio 1 DJ Chris Moyles and a gaggle of celebrities who scaled it in 2009.

'I watched them do it and thought that it would be an amazing thing to do but never thought that I would do it,' he said.

The pair have a Facebook page 2men1mountain and a Just Giving page at www.justgiving.com/2m1m and hope to raise £8000 between them.

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