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5th March 2010

Southdowns Involved in Phil & Kate's Three Peaks Challenge

Disabled Army Hero Phil Packer and the BBC's Kate Silverton Climb Three Peaks for Sport Relief Charity

Major Phil Packer, who suffered severe spinal injuries in 2008, has joined forces with BBC’s Kate Silverton to embark on an inspirational challenge for Sport Relief.

On March 5th the daring duo will take the first step on an extraordinary journey to summit the three highest peaks in the UK, Scotland's Ben Nevis, England's Scafell Pike and Wales' Mount Snowdon in just 72 hours. It will be a gruelling mountain challenge for Phil and Kate who will find themselves climbing in the dark, in hazardous weather conditions and with little or no sleep.

To complete the team Sir Steve Redgrave and Sir Clive Woodward will walk Snowdon, the final mountain, with Phil and Kate.

As with Phil's heroic Marathon Walk last summer, the team will once again be supported on the ground by Southdowns Motorcaravans. Our Concorde Cruiser motorhome, will be offering them a comfortable place to rest after their gruelling days in the mountains as well as transporting them between countries during the night. The Concorde Cruiser motorhome is being driven by Southdowns' own Quinton Hylands.

Just two years ago Phil Packer was recovering from surgery in hospital and was told he would probably never walk again. Yet at 8.00am on Friday morning he joined BBC’s Kate Silverton as they took their first step on a truly remarkable challenge for Sport Relief.

Traditionally the climb is undertaken in 24 hours but Phil Packer suffered life-changing spinal injuries in Iraq in February 2008, the pair will climb each peak in a 24-hour period and drive to each throughout the night.

Speaking at the base of the first mountain, Phil, aided by a walking stick, was in good spirits as he contemplated the day ahead: “When I start my physical challenges I am constantly reminded of how lucky I am to have improved mobility and how far I have come since my days in hospital. I am so fortunate to be able to do my bit for a tremendous cause like Sport Relief.”

Kate was equally as excited about the prospect of setting off. She said: “'Phil and I are all set, we're kitted out and as prepared as we can possibly be - the one element now is the weather, when I last looked it was -7°C at the summit of Ben Nevis. It could be a phenomenal challenge and we'll certainly be climbing into the night for each peak - but I'm really excited by what promises to be a great three-day adventure and am really proud to be doing this.”

Kate will broadcast her BBC Radio 5 Live programme live from the foot of Snowdon on Sunday 7 March (9.30-11.00am) before setting out to complete the challenge.

They will be joined on the mountains by adventurer Al Humphreys, top climber Andy Kirkpatrick and Phil's close friend Martyn Bird.

Phil and Kate are hoping to raise much-needed cash for Sport Relief to help change lives. To show them your support and to give them all the inspiration they need to keep going through this tough challenge, you can sponsor them right here.

Click here to see Quinton's Diary for the trip.