These boots were made for walking – not after today!

Fundraising and participating in events on behalf of a charity is something I have always taken great pride in. The sense of fulfilment you get, given the significant proportion of our lives we spend at work, is unlike any other. It’s the overwhelming sense of driving change, meeting a wide range of people, exploring new places whilst also giving back and helping to make someone’s or something’s life, that little bit easier, or providing them with the opportunity to further themselves.  

On the 14th of August 2021 myself and six of my colleagues, who quickly became much more than that, set off on a very demanding challenge, the Lake District five peaks; Rossett Pike, Scafell Pike, Broad Cragg, Allen Cragg and the Great End. We were attempting this with the overall goal of raising £2,500 for the Big Tiny Steps appeal at Liverpool Women’s Hospital. The Neonatal Unit is constantly providing fantastic support and specialist care to the 1,000 babies who are born every year, that unfortunately require medical specialist treatment following their birth. Words cannot describe how honoured I am to have been a part of this. 

Neonatal Unit at Liverpool Women’s Hospital 2020

Neonatal Unit at Liverpool Women’s Hospital 2020

Podcast star, Tom O’Reilly, and I set off on our three hour long(ish) train journey to Windermere, straight after work, from Liverpool Lime Street. We arrived at the Grasmere Hostel just after 7pm. The others arrived soon after and the team was complete. We spent the night talking, laughing and breaking down the conventional “chit chat” barriers with genuinely, some of the funniest and most thought-provoking conversations I have ever had.


My alarm went off at 5:30am, after an incredible night’s sleep with an added bonus of Amjad snoring. We all got our things sorted, protein bars, fruit, plenty of water, Haribo and Lesley’s speaker to blast trance all the way up the mountains. We started walking around 7am, after a brief introduction to our guides and the other teams who were taking part on behalf of their chosen charity. 

Tom O’Reilly

The enthusiastic as always, Tom O’Reilly 


The first two mountains felt like they flew by. But then the hunger kicked in and before I knew it, I was two bottles of water down and a cheese and ham sandwich had been annihilated within seconds. I could not tell you one specific conversation I had because there were so many. It felt as if me and the amazing people from MSB had known each other for years. If we weren’t talking or laughing, we were eating.


The Lake District was an unbelievable place of extreme beauty, with fantastic views. And that is just when I was stood there. 

At one point, it seemed as if we may only be able to complete four out of the five peaks, but thanks to sheer determination, the constant fear that we would “never live it down” to everyone back at MSB or our friends and family, and of course Holly powering on like she was in a tour with SAS, we managed to get all five ticked off the list.


With Above & Beyond blasting behind us, thanks to Lesley keeping the team morale, the atmosphere was just amazing for the entire day. Our target was £2,500 and thanks to every single person that donated, no matter how big or small, we smashed that target, finishing with a total of £2,701.


Mountaineers with medals

The Finish Line – featuring our medals!

We were very fortunate to be able to present the cheque at Liverpool Women’s, alongside the amazing Frances Molloy, and the staff and everyone we spoke to, were just as proud of us as we were of each other.


Phil’s Boot – the Calm Before the Storm

Now that the loving and affectionate part of the blog is out of the way, I could not write about my one-of-a-kind experience completing the Lake District five peaks without mentioning Mr Phil Campbell and his limited-edition walking boot.

Unfortunately for Phil, his boot had taken on one mountain too many after we finished the Great End. The sole of his boot was almost fully off when he noticed. I tried to help him as best as I could by providing him with some electric tape. This wasn’t enough. We met a very nice gentleman at the top of one of the peaks who provided Phil with a plethora of cable ties. This wasn’t enough either.

In the end as we got further to the finishing point, closer to the medal, a chance to sit down and finally relax, finally able to say we had achieved the challenge we set out to do and all on behalf of an amazing charity…Phil’s boot had finally had enough.

If our sense of humour wasn’t already clear, when this happened, it was blatantly obvious now:

  1. “These Boots Weren’t Made for walking”
  2. “Everybody Phil’s Footloose”
  3. “Blue Goosed Shoes” – instead of Suede…

Any song that had something to do with a shoe, or the word shoe or boot in the title, Phil was given an MSB live performance of them all.

Overall, I could not have picked a better team to walk alongside each peak. Considering I had dislocated my knee playing football seven weeks before the walk, I definitely think the people around me were the driving factor for getting me through that day.


Five peaks, one day. I am sure everyone is now dying to have a go themselves, so I will be waiting for your replies – don’t all show your interest at once!

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