Darren hitting new heights

Just Regional
Jan 9, 2013 3 mins read

A family is planning an expedition from Aylsham to Nepal in honour of a man who made a huge contribution to the people there.

Darren Moss, 48, who has lived in the town for 23 years, and six other members of the family are flying to Nepal for 20 days in April to visit the Khumbu region in memory of his father-in-law Tony Freake.

He will be joined by Tony’s wife Sheila, nephew Robert, visiting his ashes at the village of Phortse and raising money for prostate cancer.

“I have been in serious training clocking up 100 miles a month, cycling, running and trekking, pounding the countryside around Aylsham for more than 12 months,” said Darren. And he is hoping this will stand him in good stead for the six hours a day climbing from April 5-23 to not only visit the people of the village and the shrine, but to go up and beyond in the shadow of five of the eight highest mountains in the world, including Everest and peaking above the Gkyo Ri and Lakes above 20,000ft, which is five times higher than Ben Nevis.

“The altitude could be a problem and we will spend some time acclimatising before the higher stretch,” he said.

Papa Tony, as he was known to the locals, was awarded the Hilary Medal for “remarkable service in remote mountain regions”, where he supported the Sherpa people in building a water filtration plant, medical centre and school house.

His ashes are in a small shrine in the village, following his death at Christmas 2009 aged 72 through prostate cancer.

“Tony made a huge contribution to the people of Nepal and was an avid amateur climber. He visited the region on a climbing expedition back in 1989 to climb Mera Peak and passed through the remote village of Phortse. This changed his life,” said Darren. Tony and Sheila went on to visit a further 28 times and he founded the Phortse Community Project.

Darren, who, with wife Julie has three children, works for The Norfolk County FA as a development officer and is also a licensed tutor of FA courses, delivering a range of courses to coaches in the grassroots and professional game. He also sits on the committee of Aylsham Football Club as an FA liaison officer.

“On my return, I will be happy to give talks and presentations if local groups are interested (for a small donation) to the cause,” he said.

You can sponsor him via his Just Giving site www.justgiving.com/ DarrenMoss0818. Contact Darren.moss@norfolkfa.com if you are interested in booking him for a talk.


More of what's happening in Aylsham