Brian Blessed to climb Everest in aid of Cumbria flood victims
Last updated at 11:11, Tuesday, 19 January 2010
Actor Brian Blessed is aiming to climb Mount Everest without oxygen next year to raise money for Cumbria's flood victims.
He wants to scale the world's highest peak in aid of what he called a "wonderful cause."
Keen mountaineer Blessed - perhaps best known for his role as Vultan in the sci-fi movie Flash Gordon - is appearing with singer Lesley Garrett at Keswick Theatre on February 3 for the fund-raising evening called, A Concert For Cumbria.
He said: "When I was asked if I would help, I jumped at it. The mountain rescue, police, fire RNLI and others were all wonderful during the floods. And it's good that Cumbria Youth Orchestra are involved in the concert as well as I'm a great lover of youth."
Blessed - who reached Everest's summit in 2005, after trying the climb on three separate occasions - pledged he would support the floods fund-raising for the long-term.
"You need long legs and long thoughts. I hope to climb Everest in 2011 when I will be 74 years of age. I hope to do it without oxygen. And I will get sponsored and raise money for this wonderful cause, raising money over the next ten years. I'm going to put my back in it. Cumbrians are the salt of the earth, wonderful people," he added.
At the concert, Blessed - who became president of the Council for the National Parks in 2001 - will be talking about his role in Flash Gordon and give readings from Shakespeare, Wordsworth and tells stories of adventure.
He has just finished pantomime at New Wimbledon Theatre in London.
"It's a wonderful show and wonderful time but I was disappointed because all round London it was sales and early January sales and it was all very materialistic. But then the snow came and suddenly people started to care for each other and were helping each other, pushing their car and so on. There was this great community spirit, suddenly it was Christmas. It showed that no matter how materialistic the world, if you just scratch the surface, there is this great community spirit."
It was that spirit which he said had shone through at Cockermouth and Workington during November's floods.
He also revealed that he has one more ambition in his sights - going into space.
"I'm training for space. My biggest love is space. We should be as a country involved in space, getting to Mars and going to the moon. I do believe we are children of stardust. This isn't our only home. I have spent 200 hours at the Russian space centre training for space. I just need some rich person to pay for it now."
Tickets for the charity concert go on general sale from 9.30am on January 25. They will be available from the Theatre by the Lake ticket hotline on 017687 81100. They cost £25.
First published at 11:08, Tuesday, 19 January 2010
Published by http://www.newsandstar.co.uk
Have your say
Brian Blessed should be given a knighhood. He has achieved more in his life than many showbusiness 'stars' who have been knighted including Sir Tom Jones who left this country to make his fame in the U.S.A. He was the first oldest man to climb everest what an honour for the UK. The Queen should look at what he has done for our country and give him a knighthood!!!
British actor Brian Blessed made his first trip to Everest in 1990 and also in 1993, 1996, although he has never stood on its summit.Mount Everest The British Story
View all 5 comments on this article