Ex-Army man Graeme scales Kilimanjaro

Climb any mountain: Graeme Barlow (right) with Colin Barlow, at the summit of Kilimanjaro
Climb any mountain: Graeme Barlow (right) with Colin Barlow, at the summit of Kilimanjaro
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A LEYLAND businessman climbed Mount Kilimanjaro for two causes close to his heart.

Ex-soldier Graeme Barlow, 43 is a director of the family firm Barlow Trailers.

He raised £20,000 for Help for Heroes and the Rosemere Cancer Centre which provided care to his late father-in-law.

Graeme, a father-of-five, served as a dog trainer in the Royal Army Veterinary Corps and said conquering Kilimanjaro was the most difficult thing he’d done in his life.

He was joined on the climb by Army buddy, Duggie Payne, and his cousin, Colin Barlow.

He said: “I knew it wasn’t going to be easy but I didn’t realise it was going to be as difficult as it was. Although I run three miles every morning, you get used to your home comforts.”

Reaching the summit of the 19,335-feet high Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania took five-and-a-half gruelling days of humid rain forest heat and snow blizzards.

He said: “At the bottom of the mountain, it’s 100 plus degrees as you would expect in Africa and then you go through the rain forest which is hot and sweaty.

“After that we had to trek over volcanic rock and we encountered high winds and blizzards. The first three days were hard but the last two days were horrible.

“It’s 18 years since I came out of the army and although I’m quite fit I’m obviously not in peak condition. I definitely would not do it again. Barlow Trailers are the main Lancashire distributor for Ifor Williams Trailers, who topped up the proceeds by donating £500 to be shared between the two organisations.