Normanton mountaineer Charlie, 6, secures new climbing wall for school with fundraising campaign

Pupils at an Altofts primary school will soon be able to climb a mountain in their own playground, thanks to a fundraising effort from their classmate.

Thursday, 19th November 2020, 12:30 pm

Charlie Batham, 6, raised almost £1,000 for his school last year by completing a series of climbing challenges, including the Yorkshire Three Peaks.

This week, staff at Lee Brigg Infant and Nursery School unveiled a new climbing wall in Charlie’s name, funded by his series of climbs.

Accompanied by a mural from local artist Lizi Tebbutt, who runs Normanton’s Toast coffee house, the climbing wall offers pupils the chance to climb their very own mountain.

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Charlie Batham, 6, raised almost £1,000 for his school last year by completing a series of climbing challenges, including the Yorkshire Three Peaks.

Paul said: “It looks absolutely amazing. It’s kind of a legacy that’s going to be there for years.

“Charlie leaves that school soon so it’s nice for him to be able to use it and then everybody else who comes through school will get to use it for years to come.

“Especially with everything else going on, it’s an extra thing for the kids to look forward to.

"Some of the teachers have gone out of their way to make it happen, if it wasn't for the teachers it wouldn't have happened."

The climbing wall is accompanied by a mural from local artist Lizi Tebbutt, who runs Normanton’s Toast coffee house. Pictured is Charlie with parents Paul and Donna.

Laurabeth Kilkenny, head of Lee Brigg School, said: “Well done to Charlie, we are really proud of him!

“We know that all the children are going to enjoy his climbing wall now and in the future.

“Little things like this are a luxury for schools, we just wouldn’t have been able to do it without Charlie.”

Since turning five last April, Charlie has reached the summit of 53 different peaks, climbing 63,000 feet this year alone.

Charlie has climbed 53 mountains since his fifth birthday last April. He is pictured with dad Paul

Paul said: “I’ve totalled Charlie’s totals up and he’s over 3,000ft higher than two Everests just this year, and that’s with three or four months off due to lockdown.

“He asked to climb a mountain for his fifth birthday and he loved it. Now I’ve kind of slowed down a bit but he’s kept up.

“I can see the change from when he first set out and he didn’t want to go in front of me to now, he leads the way and tells me when there’s a dangerous bit coming up.”