Herefordshire care home staff raise £2,500 with midnight mountaineering

(L-R) Jackie Cale, Joan Arrowsmith and Jayne Fountain
(L-R) Jackie Cale, Joan Arrowsmith and Jayne Fountain

Three team members at a care home in Ledbury have raised nearly £2,500 for the Alzheimer’s Society by climbing Ben Nevis in the middle of the night.


Joan Arrowsmith, Jayne Fountain and Jackie Cale, who are part of the team at Shaw healthcare’s Ledbury Intermediate Care Unit, joined almost 200 other fundraisers to climb the UK’s highest mountain. The 4,409-foot trek took more than nine hours of continuous walking, setting off at 10pm and arriving back at base at 7:30am for a well-earned breakfast.


The trek was made even tougher by adverse weather conditions, with the team finding snow when they reached the summit at 2:30am.


This is not the first time the trio have taken on a fundraising challenge for the Alzheimer’s Society, raising nearly £10,000 in October 2011 when they walked the Great Wall of China.


Joan Arrowsmith, unit manager at Ledbury ICU, said: “All three of us have professional and personal experience of caring for someone with dementia, and know the devastating effect this disease can have on an individual and their families. We are all long-standing supporters of the Alzheimer’s Society and, after the success of our Great Wall of China walk, we were on the lookout for our next challenge.


“We managed to get together for a few training walks in the Malvern Hills, but the climb was even tougher than we expected. The low cloud, mist and ice at the summit meant we weren’t able to stay at the top for very long, but it was a fantastic experience to be on top of a mountain at night time, and to see Glen Nevis come alive on the descent as the sun started to come up.


“Every penny raised for the Alzheimer’s Society goes towards supporting families affected by the disease, and funds research into finding a cure. We’re very proud to have raised such a fantastic amount so far and would like to thank everyone who has supported and encouraged us in our latest venture. I’m sure it won’t be long before we start to plan the next one!”


To make a donation, visit and search for the three colleagues’ names.


Ledbury Intermediate Care and Minor Injuries Unit provides short-stay nursing and rehabilitation for up to 14 patients at a time. It is one of more than 80 sites operated by Shaw healthcare, one of the UK’s leading health and social care providers.


Shaw healthcare provides care for individuals in nursing and residential homes, hospitals, supported living environments and domiciliary care schemes. Its services ranging from comprehensive care packages through to low-level support in the community for older people and adults with physical, sensory or mental health support needs.


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