College Reach New Heights

Wed, 01/03/2000 - 00:00

At the recent Royal Highland Show, six East Durham College students competed in the Scottish Pole Climbing Champions, competing over three days to see who could climb up an eighty foot Douglas fir pole in the quickest time, using only a climbing strop and climbing irons.


The Royal Highland Show takes place annually at Ingliston, near Edinburgh. This year’s show ran from 25th – 28th June. With the largest display of livestock and record visitor numbers, the show management team heralded this year’s event an outstanding success. There were no less than three royal visits, Her Majesty The Queen, HRH Princess Royal and HRH Princess Alexandra.


From East Durham’s Houghall Campus Richard Batson, Aaron Peacock and Shaun Milne on a National Certificate in Arboriculture and Josh Marshall, Alasdair Woodhead and David Teasdale on the National Diploma in Arboriculture all competed in the pole climbing.


The main Championship was held on the Sunday with five of the students finishing in the top six of the Novice Category and one student coming fourth in the Expert Section.


Lecturer, Christopher Wheatley, said: “All the students climbed extremely well. With each climb they knocked seconds of their previous best times, until some of them where equalling the times of the expert climbers.


“The students who provided the belay team also did an excellent job in managing the safety and smooth running of the pole climbing event. I hope they all do as well down at the Great Yorkshire Show.”

The East Durham College team will also be competing at the Great Yorkshire Show, 14th – 16th July, in the British Pole Climbing Championships, in both the novice and expert category. They will then go down to the Royal Welsh Show to compete in the Welsh Pole Climbing Championships.