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Fife man to climb three Munros from comfort of his own home for mental health charity

Ross Cunningham.
Ross Cunningham.

A Fife man is aiming to climb three of Scotland’s most famous peaks, including Ben Nevis, all from his own home in an energy sapping charity challenge.

Ross Cunningham, 34, will use a staircase at his Glenrothes home to climb the height of the Britain’s highest mountain, as well as the peaks of  Liathach in Torridon and The Saddle at Kintail, in a gruelling week-long challenge in support of the Scottish Association for Mental Health (SAMH) charity.

The three Munros make a combined height of 10,188 feet, with Ben Nevis alone measuring 4,413 feet in altitude, over three times the full height of the Empire State Building.

Ross, admits had it not been for the lockdown he’d almost certainly be Munro bagging, but with restrictions continuing had devised a plan to keep fit and fundraise for a charity close to his heart.

“I got the idea after reading online about others setting themselves challenges during the lockdown and if I can raise some money for a good cause at the same time then even better,” said Ross.

It’s a difficult time for everyone  and it’s likely more and more people will be affected by mental health issues in the months ahead due to the pandemic.

“Depression is something I’ve gone through in the past and it’s such an awful condition, and I felt like I would never be able to recover from it.

“But opening up about my mental health and exercising and hiking Scotland’s mountains really made a big difference to me in overcoming it.

“I’ve chosen these three mountains as they are among my favourite Munros, although I’m not sure I’ll still remember them so fondly by the end of this challenge.”

Ross said plans to complete the smaller climbs first before taking on Britain’s biggest in Ben Nevis which will mean climbing his stairs 588 times.

Susan Williams, community fundraising manager at SAMH said she was delighted that Ross has taken on the challenge  to raise funds for Scotland’s mental health, especially in such difficult times.

She added: “It’s also a great reminder that we can stay physically active inside, which can support our mental wellbeing.  Everyone at SAMH wish Ross the very best of luck.”

To make a donation to the challenge go to www.justgiving.com/fundraising/rosscunninghamstaircasechallenge

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