Whernside, in the Yorkshire Dales. Photo: Bob Smith/grough

Whernside, in the Yorkshire Dales. Photo: Bob Smith/grough

The British Mountaineering Council said its appeal to raise a million pounds for path improvements on British hills is on track to meet its target.

Four months into the year-long campaign, more than £330,000 has been donated.

The organisation, which represents climbers, mountaineers and hillwalkers in England and Wales, launched the Mend Our Mountains: Make One Million to raise cash for repairs to heavily used and eroded routes in national parks, including Scafell Pike in the Lake District, Whernside in the Yorkshire Dales, Cadair Idris in Snowdonia, Beinn a’ Ghlò in the Cairngorms, and part of the South Downs Way.

The BMC said the appeal has been boosted by some unexpected donations.

Visitors to the Hampton Court flower show were met with a Mend Our Mountains-themed garden endorsed by Julia Bradbury and designed by TV celebrity David Domoney. The appeal received a sizeable donation from Everest Windows, who sponsored the garden.

BMC member Richard Duckworth is also undertaking a ‘Dirty Dozen’ challenge to walk all the projects supported by the appeal. The Oglesby Charitable Trust, which supports projects which have a positive social and environmental impact in the North-West of England, has pledged £40,000.

Outdoor brands and businesses including Vango, Fjallraven, Hanwag, Trekkit and The Outdoor Guide are also supporting the appeal, while main sponsors Cotswold Outdoor and Snow + Rock are also providing collecting boxes in 110 stores, while a gear sale by Trail magazine at Keswick Mountain Festival raised £9,000.

The BMC plans a crowdfunding appeal in autumn and is continuing to pursue business and individual contributions.

Matthew Bradbury, chair of the BMC Access and Conservation Trust. Photo: Bob Smith/grough

Matthew Bradbury, chair of the BMC Access and Conservation Trust. Photo: Bob Smith/grough

Matthew Bradbury, chair of the BMC Access and Conservation Trust, said: “Mend Our Mountains: Make One Million is really moving up through the gears, and hitting this milestone is a big boost.

“The total we have raised so far ranges from fivers given by individual outdoor enthusiasts to donations in the tens of thousands from businesses and charitable foundations, and everything in-between. All donations are valuable.

“Raising money is important because fixing the problem of path erosion in the hills and mountains is not cheap. When you factor in stone airlifts, skilled labour and remote locations, it can cost as much as £200 per metre or more.

“But this appeal is also about bringing the outdoor community together and showing our appreciation for the places we walk, run, ride, ramble or climb in. Get involved by rallying your friends and family; organise fundraising activities with your group, club or outdoor buddies; spread the word as far as you can.”

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