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Newspaper PR man bags 50 peaks in 50 weeks

Archant corporate communications manager Keith Morris and wife Nicky enjoy a glass of champagne at the top of their final peak

A regional newspaper PR man survived heavy snowfall, fought off swarms of insects and battled vertigo to climb 50 peaks in 50 weeks for charity.

Archant communications manager Keith Morris, along with his wife Nicky, set off on their mission on New Year’s Day.

They are pictured raising a glass of bubbly to toast their final climb, the former volcanic mountain of Atalaya De Femes in Lanzarote, Spain.

The South Norfolk couple decided to take on the gruelling challenge to mark their 50th birthdays, which they celebrated earlier this year.

So far, they have raised £6,800 for the Mercy Flyers charity to carry out life-changing operations for people in Zambia.

As part of the 120-mile trek, the pair climbed 95,000ft – more than three times the height of Mount Everest – including scaling the highest mountains in England and Wales, Scafell Pike and Snowdon, along with dozens of others such as the Malvern Hills, the Shropshire Hills, Yorkshire Dales, Brecon Beacons, and those in the Peak District, Lake District, and the Cotswolds.

“We wanted to mark the birthday milestone in an unusual but worthwhile way and this turned out to be an amazing and memorable year,” said Keith, who is based at Archant’s Prospect House office in Norwich.

“Some of the less memorable moments included getting lost on one of our very first climbs in the Yorkshire Dales, myself suffering a bout of vertigo on a Welsh mountain and refusing to climb any higher and Nicky falling headfirst into a steam on our penultimate climb, again in the Dales.

“But the highs have been far higher, literally, than the lows and my mind is now turning to what to do to mark our 60th birthdays in a decade’s time.”

He said he will now be applying to Archant Gold staff charity matched funding scheme in the hope it will be able to double the amount raised.

The couple’s exploits can be read in full in Archant’s Let’s Talk magazine as well as on Keith’s blog.