Portsmouth stalwart and ex-Oxford United, Bristol Rovers, Cheltenham Town and Torquay United favourite ready for challenge of a lifetime

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He’s watched Pompey climb some mountains in his lengthy association with the football club.

Now Pompey kitman and former academy coach Shaun North is quite literally going to be scaling new heights for the most worthy of causes.

North and his son, Shane, are taking on the challenge of a lifetime as they trek 50km up Mount Everest to Base Camp - all in aid of Blesma, a charity which aids service men and women who’ve suffered life-changing limb loss.

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It’s a mammoth challenge for the coach who has served a host of clubs including the likes of Bristol Rovers, Oxford United, Cheltenham, Torquay and AFC Wimbledon.

North, though, is most closely associated with Pompey serving the club for more than two decades across two spells, while his dad, Roger, ran the club’s Isle of Wight centre of excellence.

The pair are taking on the task over the space of 10 days after flying out to Kathmandu this week and then on to start their challenge.

That will see them finish up 5,500m above sea level at the end of the gruelling test of stamina.

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The fundraiser is also being backed by supermarket chain Morrisons, who have generously agreed to match what the Norths raise from taking on the challenge.

Pompey kitman Shaun North is climbing Mount Everest for charityPompey kitman Shaun North is climbing Mount Everest for charity
Pompey kitman Shaun North is climbing Mount Everest for charity

North said: ‘From now on it’s on foot to Everest Base Camp.

‘We won’t be going all the way to the top because that would cost in the region of £70,000 to do that.

‘But it’s still 5,500m above sea level, so we’re not taking on an easy option.

‘It’s basically a 50m walk going upwards!

‘We’ve got 10 days to do it and we’ll be going all out.

‘We think it’s a really good cause to do it for.

‘It’s for service veterans who come back from duty deformed in some way

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‘It could be they’ve lost a leg, arm, eyes or any other similar injury.

‘The charity does a lot of good work and we’ve had great support from Morrisons, who’ve been brilliant.

‘It’s something we will never forget and to do it for such a good cause makes it all the more worthwhile.’

To support the Pompey kitman and his son on their challenge you can visit their Just Giving page HERE.

To learn more about Blesma, The Limbless Veterans and the work they are undertaking visit blesma.org.

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