Rehan Siddiqui, right, with chief executive Dave Turnbull

Rehan Siddiqui, right, with chief executive Dave Turnbull

The body that represents hillwalkers, climbers and mountaineers south of the border revealed it will launch a major campaign next year to help Britain’s upland paths.

The British Mountaineering Council’s Mend Our Ways scheme will look at fundraising to maintain the country’s hill and mountain paths and will be led by the Access and Conservation Trust.

The campaign was revealed at the annual ‘state of the nation’ meeting held by the BMC at the Kendal Mountain Festival. The council’s president Rehan Siddiqui, chief executive Dave Turnbull and ambassador Steve McClure, the Sheffield-based climber, spoke at the event.

Climber Niall Grimes amused festival-goers

Climber Niall Grimes amused festival-goers

Mr Siddiqui also presented a £24,789 cheque to mountaineer Doug Scott for his Community Action Nepal charity, which is working to help the residents, Sherpas and porters of remote Himalayan areas of the country following this year’s devastating earthquakes.

The BMC said its membership had grown this year to more than 80,000, and pledged to put its weight behind an upcoming Mountain Magpie campaign, aimed at combating litter on Britain’s mountains.

Two new appointments will take place next year: Joanna Rowbottom will join the BMC as equity and partnerships officer to support people from underrepresented groups, and James McHaffie will be the new youth and partnerships officer to support young people.

BMC grading squad in action

The Manchester-based council said a review of all climbing qualifications will be undertaken by Mountain Training, ranging from indoor wall awards to those involving ice climbing. A public consultation will take place.

Steve McClure was later joined by Niall Grimes in the festival’s Basecamp Village tent for an anarchic, impromptu presentation to the gathered Kendal crowds, including a showing of a BMC TV video revealing the science behind grading a Peak District limestone route.

Elsewhere at the festival, Lowe Alpine and Rab hosted a talk by Derbyshire-based climber and mountaineer Andy Cave in which he revealed the trials of attempting climbs on some of the world’s most remote peaks in Patagonia including a near shipwreck in a South American fjord while trying to reach a route.

Andy Cave gave an insight into the difficulties of climbing in Patagonia

Andy Cave gave an insight into the difficulties of climbing in Patagonia

There were lots of famous British climbing faces at the festival, including Sir Chris Bonington, Kenton Cool, Leo Houlding and Alan Hinkes, mingling with the crowds.

Sir Chris also joined the Lake District National Park Authority’s presentation to push its bid for world heritage status.

The mountaineering elder statesman and authority chief executive Richard Leafe led a question and answer session in the Basecamp tent on the bid, which has adopted the United by Herdy logo for its campaign.

Richard Leafe, left, and Sir Chris Bonington present the case for the Lake District's world heritage bid

Richard Leafe, left, and Sir Chris Bonington present the case for the Lake District's world heritage bid

Mr Leafe said: “The world heritage bid is in the final stages of being ready for submission in the New Year, and in 2016 Unesco will take a look at how people are living, working and visiting our unique landscape and culture.

“We are delighted to have herdy on board as a face of the campaign and hope it will encourage people join us on our journey and support the bid.”

herdy is a Kendal-based design and retail company that also supports local farming and other upland projects in Cumbria and farther afield.

Co-founder Spencer Hannah said: “The Lake District continues to provide a rich source of inspiration, whether it’s to climb mountains, write poetry, or start a new business, as we did when we created the herdy brand. So it’s a real privilege for herdy to be able to provide a welcoming, warm and friendly face for the world heritage bid over the next couple of years.

The Kendal Mountain Festival site

The Kendal Mountain Festival site

“We look forward to working alongside communities across Cumbria and the 25 organisations that make up the Lake District National Park Partnership to show the rest of the world why this is such a unique, diverse and progressive cultural landscape.

“When the Unesco judging panel visit, we want them to see evidence of a truly inspired, united, local community, with a clear identity and a passion for its landscape. Keep it simple. Smile at the world and it will smile back.”

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