Charity champ Bill’s mission is accomplished

Bill Honeywell, his wife Val and Bill Birkett
Bill Honeywell, his wife Val and Bill Birkett
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After 86 days spent on the Lake District fells – many of them alone – Bill Honeywell reached his 542nd and final summit on Saturday, raising an impressive £30,000 for Cancer Research UK.

On this occasion he was anything but alone, as around 60 people including Rotarians (from Clitheroe, Ribblesdale, and Church and Oswaldtwistle), friends and family were there to enjoy the party atmosphere. There were even famous people among the walking party, including Mark Richards, author of the Fellranger series of Lakeland guides, and the man responsible the eponymous summits, Bill Birkett.

Although cloud and drizzle dominated the weather, it was mild and calm, and the party enjoyed the autumn colours and good conversation as they walked to the summit of Carron Crag, where a bottle of champagne appeared and congratulations were made.

Back at the Grizedale, free refreshments were kindly provided courtesy of the Visitor Centre and Bill made a short speech mainly thanking his wife, Val, for her incredible patience.

Since January, Bill has climbed 542 summits – including all the 214 “Wainwrights” (for the second time); walked 750 miles; climbed almost 225,000’ and would probably have worn out his boots if he hadn’t decided to alternate two pairs!

When Bill was asked what his next challenge was going to be, Val replied: “The Back Garden”! Bill added: “I would like to thank everyone for their tremendous support on this challenge, the aim of which was to raise money for Cancer Research UK.

“So many people have pledged donations (which are now due!) and all further donations will be welcome. Anyone wishing to donate is asked to log on to www.542in2016.org.uk.”