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Monday, 28 July 2014

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Pensioner to ski height of Everest to raise money for Cumbrian theatre

A plucky pensioner will attempt to ski more than 29,000ft – the height of Mount Everest – in a single day to raise money for a popular Cumbrian theatre.

Martin Jordan photo
Martin Jordan

Martin Jordan, 79, plans to complete his challenge within one eight-hour day this month by skiing down more than 20 runs.

The money he will raise from his marathon sponsored effort will go towards Keswick’s Theatre by the Lake.

Martin, who lives in Keswick, will take on the challenge in his favourite resort of Söll in Austria, where he has skied for 35 years. During a single day he will take more than 30 ski lifts.

He said: “I’ve never skied that distance before in a day, though I have got within a thousand metres of it.

“Each lift entry gate will read my pass and at the end of the day I can get a print-out which will tell me the distance I’ve covered and the vertical metres of descent.”

Martin, a regular at the theatre, has lived in Keswick since 1960 and will be 80 in March. He is also an enthusiastic walker and raised money to help build Theatre by the Lake by completing a circuit of the four 3,000ft Lake District peaks.

He said: “Theatre by the Lake has been fantastic for Keswick.

“I’m doing this because I believe in introducing young people to the theatre at an early age and encouraging them to perform. I was really shy when I was young, but I had a different persona on stage. I got so much from it.”

Martin performed in plays and musicals in his native Yorkshire and later acted with Keswick’s Theatre Club. As a boy, he sang in the West Riding Boys Concert Choir and later performed as a magician, played the harmonica and more recently was a folk singer and guitarist.

Hannah Leverett, spokeswoman for the theatre, said it relied on fundraisers such as Martin.

She said: “Theatre by the Lake is a registered charity. We earn £8 of every £10 we spend, but we still rely on public funding sources for the other £2.

“In an environment where public funding is increasingly being cut, private donations are becoming more and more important to fill that funding gap.”

The money Martin raises will be doubled under Arts Council England’s Catalyst scheme. To sponsor Martin please go to his online fundraising page: http://www.justgiving.com/Martin-Jordan4

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