Rescuers at the scene of the incident at Quayfoot Buttress. Photo: Keswick MRT

Rescuers at the scene of the incident at Quayfoot Buttress. Photo: Keswick MRT

A climbing instructor and mountain rescue volunteer has died after an accident last week on a Lake District crag.

Keswick Mountain Rescue Team was called out to Quayfoot Buttress on Thursday after Sam Pilcher fell from the rock.

Kong Adventure Keswick revealed Mr Pilcher, who worked for the climbing centre, died after the incident.

A Kong spokesperson said: “It is with great sorrow that we share the news that one of our instructors lost his life last week.

“Sam Pilcher was out climbing with a friend when he suffered a tragic freak accident at Quayfoot Buttress in Borrowdale.

“Sam joined our team in February 2020 and instantly brought enthusiasm, drive and passion to his job. He was exceptionally hard working and was extremely popular with all of our staff and customers and quickly bonded with all of those he taught. He recently set up the home-school group climbing sessions that were particularly well attended.

“Sam had also recently joined Langdale Ambleside Mountain Rescue Team and was excited and looking forward to helping out on many rescues.

“Sam was passionate about helping out others who were vulnerable or were having difficulties in their life.”

The climbing centre said Mr Pilcher had teamed up with another of its instructors, Steve Chadwick, to climb 18 of the oldest routes in the Lake District in the footwear that was available at the time in an ‘old routes in old boots’ project.

“Sam wanted to raise awareness and support the group DeWolf bushcraft which offers sanctuary and support for emergency service workers, NHS staff and veterans,” the spokesperson said.

“Steve is going to continue this challenge as a tribute to Sam and is looking for climbing partners to hold his ropes. If anyone is interested in supporting this challenge in memory of Sam, please contact Steve at our centre.

“We would like to thank Keswick Mountain Rescue Team, his climbing partner Jamie and all of those involved in his rescue and for the superb care he received at Newcastle hospital.
Our thoughts are with his family and friends.”

A Keswick MRT spokesperson said: “He was a fellow MRT member and sounded like an amazing guy with such a promising future. Our thoughts and condolences to his family and friends.”

  • Sam Pilcher in bouldering action in a video on the Kong Adventure Keswick Facebook page

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