Mountain adventure tribute to Rugby ace

nrn 180811 Trekking for Gareth: The team of 23, including several of Gareth Lewis's former Ilkeston Rugby club team mates completed the Three Peaks Challenge over the weekend.
nrn 180811 Trekking for Gareth: The team of 23, including several of Gareth Lewis's former Ilkeston Rugby club team mates completed the Three Peaks Challenge over the weekend.

A PROUD pair of sisters completed the gruelling three peaks challenge this week in memory of their rugby mad younger brother.

The former team-mates, friends and family of talented sportsman Gareth Lewis of Ilkeston Road, Heanor, who died suddenly last year aged just 20, took on Britain’s highest mountains in 24 hours over Saturday and Sunday.

Together the group of trekkers, led by Gareth’s sisters Sian, 26, and Sarah, 25, aim to raise more than £5,000 for the The Rugby Football Union Injured Players Foundation, which gives support to players who have faced life threatening injuries.

Sian lewis, who now lives on Pentrich Drive, Shipley View, said the chosen charity, was close to the hearts of Gareth’s former Ilkeston Rugby Club team mates.

She said: “We really wanted to do something in Gareth’s memory and we wanted to do something that challenged ourselves as well.

“Gareth was really popular, he had so many friends and there would have been even more people take part if they could.

“He was such a kind, caring and affectionate lad - everyone always remembers what a nice smile he had. He was a great guy and a really talented rugby player.”

The Three Peaks Challenge sees groups of people attempt to ascend and descend Britain’s three highest peaks in a 24 hour period.

The 23-strong group took an eight hour coach journey from Ilkeston to Ben Nevis in the Scottish highlands early on Saturday morning. Setting off at the foot of the mountain at 3.30pm they made it to the peak and back by 5.30pm.

They then took another coach journey to Scafell Pike in Cumbria, which they climbed overnight, from 3.30am until 8.30am.

Just a few hours sleep on the coach were permitted before arriving at the base of Mount Snowdon in North Wales at midday.

Finally 20 of the 23 trekkers completed the course in just under 24 hours at 3pm on the Sunday.

Sian, a teacher in Long Eaton, was thankful torrential rain did not hit Cumbria as was forecast and said the trekkers are recovering well despite having some sore muscles.

The group has already raised £1,475, but to give to the appeal, head to www.justgiving.com/garethlewis3peaks.