Derek joined with seven other MPs and a peer last weekend in walking up Snowdon, the highest mountain in Wales, to discuss issues affecting climbers and walkers and promote the importance of outdoor recreation to the rural economy.
The members of the All Party Parliamentary Mountaineering Group (APPMG) were joined for their climb of Snowdon on Friday 7th September by Alan Hinkes, the first British mountaineer to have summited all 14 8,000m+ peaks, and the first Welshman to climb Everest, Crag Jones.
Also accompanying the parliamentarians were National Mountain Centre Colleagues based at Plas Y Brenin.
The APPMG, formally established last year, is a group of over 30 parliamentarians who are all keen walkers, climbers and mountaineers. Regular meetings with members of the APPMG gives the British Mountaineering Council (BMC) access to politicians to work on issues affecting climbing, hill walking and mountaineering.
Following last year's successful Lake District walk up Blencathra with Sir Chris Bonington, this year's event has drawn in new members of the Group and is now set to be an annual event. Setting off from Pen y Pass along the PyG Track, the parliamentarians reached the summit and were met with exceptionally clear and bright views of Cadair Idris and Lliwedd in the far distance.
Derek, a keen fell walker, said:
"The climb was exhilirating in fine weather and it was rewarding to be greeted by spectacular views of Snowdonia at the summit. It was also great to spend time with two esteemed mountaineers such as Alan Hinkes and Crag Jones.
I was pleased to be doing something to promote the health and social benefits of accessible walking, which helps boost individual health and well-being, as well as the rural economy more generally. I would encourage anyone who is able to do so to take up this inspiring activity.