FIVE firefighters will take on a gruelling night-time marathon to raise money for two charities close to their hearts.
Cosham firefighters Steve Roberts, Jack Salter-Vaile, George Hart, Ryan Matthews, and Gosport firefighter Graeme Dobson have been training hard for the Brutal Midnight Mountain Marathon next Saturday, June 29.
This event is no ordinary marathon as the course takes runners through forests, over streams, past waterfalls and up mountains in the Brecon Beacons. Challengers start at 5.30pm and have to finish before the midnight cut-off.
The full-time firefighters have chosen two charities to support with this extreme event, one being The Fire Fighters Charity which provides care for injured firefighters and their families, as some of the group have experienced first-hand the care and assistance offered.
Graeme said: ‘I have experienced the charity first-hand after a back injury, so it is nice to get involved and give them something back.
‘We have been doing lots of training on the South Downs Way. We have run up to 20 miles so, all being well, we will make the finish.’
Also receiving support from this event will be A Band Of Brothers, which mentors young men who are involved or in danger of becoming involved in the criminal justice system.
Among the challenges posed by the Midnight Mountain Marathon will be a 2,907ft ascent of Pen y Fan, the highest peak in South Wales, and part of the Fan Dance which is the infamous run taken on by potential members of British Special Forces as part of their selection process.
Graeme added: ‘I feel naturally apprehensive. The big thing is that the weather in the mountains can be a massive factor, it's going to be massively tough at times.
‘I’m excited as well because it's an adventure and we will be there to support each other through it. It's nice to push yourself outside your comfort zone.’
Having exceeded their initial target of £500, the group is aiming to raise as much as possible to split between the two causes.
To support the group’s efforts, visit www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/midnightmountainmarathon