A FANTASTIC team effort by members of Bathgate and District JAC has raised a staggering £6575 for charity.

On Sunday, October 18, 21 members of the club climbed to the snowy summit of Ben Nevis in a bid to raise vital funds for Marie Curie Edinburgh Hospice - which will help patients and their families suffering from a terminal illnesses.

The clubs’ secretary Kathryn Russel told the SF that every year they chose a different charity and this year it was a cause close to a lot of their hearts: “This year we chose to raise funds for Marie Curie Edinburgh after a family friend of some of our past members was cared for in the hospice at Fairmilehead.

“Fundraising began with our concert raffle which raised just over £1000. We then planned to continue fundraising at various events throughout the year but unfortunately COVID hit and prevented this.”

In September, the club decided they would hold a one-off event to raise funds and made the decision to tackle Ben Nevis, throw themselves in to preparing for the challenge with gym trips and numerous munros.

Club member Karla Hardie took part in the team challenge: “As the date of the climb got closer we started to question what we’d signed up for,” she said. “But when the day arrived I think we all realised why we decided to do it as it was a great feeling reaching the top together and encouraging each other all the way up. Although the view wasn’t clear at the top and it was really cold, we got great views on the way up and everyone really enjoyed themselves. It was a great achievement for the club and Marie Curie is a charity that is very close to a lot of our hearts.”

Kathryn added that the past year has been very tough for young farmers: “It has been difficult to keep events going and members active, however, the new rules and lack of typical activities has meant we have had to think outside our usual club event calendar. This prompted us to think of different events like climbing Ben Nevis.”

Bathgate and District JAC chairman Cameron Fleming thanked everyone for their efforts: “I’m extremely proud of all 21 members who achieved their goal of getting to the top and truly overwhelmed by the generosity of everyone who supported us. Top effort from everybody!”