Miles Up the North Pole

Chiswick man takes on icy challenge for charity

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Always up for a challenge, 34-year-old Miles Welch of Fishers Lane, Chiswick is training to win a 330-mile race to the North Pole on foot while pulling 150lb in temperatures down to –50oC. Not only that, but he and his colleagues want to use this challenge to raise money for Make-A-Wish Foundation UK, the charity that grants wishes to children and young people living with life-threatening illnesses.

Together with two friends, Miles will take part in the 2007 Polar Challenge, a race between ten teams. Starting from the aptly named Resolute on Cornwallis Island north of Canada in mid April, it is the toughest and most extreme race on earth. So just when we all hope to be seeing in a new spring, Miles will be ‘up the pole’ in the cold facing a grueling race and polar bears!

The Polar Challenge attracts massive media coverage, appearing on the BBC, Discovery Channel, Trans World Sport and Eurosport next year.

“I love to set myself challenges and this will push us to the limit as a team working towards a goal in the most extreme and unforgiving environment. In fact fewer people have reached the North Pole than have climbed Everest,” says Miles, a veteran of 4 ultra-marathons including the Gobi March (160 miles over the Gobi Desert, China) and the Jordan Desert Cup (105 miles non-stop). In normal workaday life, Miles is managing director to two companies within Endemol UK.

The team is looking for sponsors to help them undertake the race and raise money for Make-A-Wish.

“Our challenge is synonymous with those faced by business today. We can use this challenge to help businesses with team building and motivation, gain media exposure across many countries plus they can use it as a focus to raise money for charity,” adds Miles.

That’s if he doesn’t get eaten by a polar bear!

Make-A-Wish Foundation UK is the leading UK wish granting charity with one simple aim - to turn the wishes of children aged 3 to 17 living with life-threatening illnesses into reality. With the help of hundreds of volunteers, corporate, celebrity and individual sponsors around the country, Make-A-Wish has granted 4,200 wishes since it began in 1986. Originally founded in America, Make-A-Wish Foundation is now established in 27 countries on five continents.

November 9, 2006