Southsea firefighters to take on Three Peaks Challenge in aid of Portsmouth charity Tonic Music

A TEAM of five firefighters from Southsea are undertaking the Three Peaks Challenge to raise funds for a city-based music and mental health charity.

By Richard Lemmer
Thursday, 17th June 2021, 4:30 pm
Updated Friday, 18th June 2021, 3:24 pm
Firefighters Dan Reeks, Brad Yates, James Johnson and Nico Razzell are doing the Pilgrimage of Pain.
Firefighters Dan Reeks, Brad Yates, James Johnson and Nico Razzell are doing the Pilgrimage of Pain.

Barry Kings-Hodkin, Brad Yates, James Johnson, Nico Razzell, and Dan Reeks – from Southsea fire station – will be embarking on the colossal challenge on June 30.

Their aim is to raise as much money as possible for the Firefighters Charity, which supports in-need fire service personnel across the country, and Tonic Music for Mental Health, a Southsea-based group that uses arts and music to improve people’s mental wellbeing.

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Firefighters Dan Reeks, Brad Yates, James Johnson and Nico Razzell are doing the Pilgrimage of Pain.

Not only will the fundraising five be tackling the 10,052ft climb across Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike and Snowden, but they will also be cycling the 452 miles distance between the mountains – in just three and a half days.

Firefighter Dan said: ‘It was Barry’s brain child but he’s done the Three Peaks Challenge before. The original idea was to just do the challenge – and then he came up with the idea to push ourselves to an insane level.’

Dan and Nico were originally expecting to form the support team in a van accompanying the others – but they too were roped into the mountain climbs while the other three will take on both the climbing and cycling.

Dan, who has been stationed in Southsea for the last two years, said: ‘It’s the cycling training that they are really fighting against.

‘One the first day of the challenge, they will do Ben Nevis at 5am, do that in six hours, and then those three have to jump on their bikes and ride 136 miles, which should take 11 hours.

‘It’s crazy.’

The team’s ambition challenge has already raised more than £630 for the two causes, which are both close to the team’s hearts, according to Dan.

The 35-year-old said: ‘We know a few firefighters have used (Tonic Music for Mental Health). This year has been a struggle for a lot of people.’

He added: ‘We are going to be broken by the end.

‘But we have got the firefighter mentality – we don’t like to give up. We will get through it together.’

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