Pupils on top of the world after adventurer visit

Tom Clowes with pupils from Mount St Mary's College
Tom Clowes with pupils from Mount St Mary's College

Pupils at Mount St Mary’s College were inspired to reach their peak following a visit by global adventurer Tom Clowes.

Tom and Ben Clowes were the first British brothers to reach the summit of Mount Everest together in 2006.

As part of the Derbyshire school’s Learning and Development programme, Tom talked to pupils about the epic adventure and the challenges they faced along the way.

Tom’s successful Everest challenge was his second attempt at reaching the peak – the first he made from Tibet in 2004 but he became trapped in a violent storm for two days and was forced to turn around. Eight climbers lost their lives.

He trained for six months in preparation for the second 8,848 metre climb, which raised money for Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity.

Tom said: “The trek to Everest base camp was 60 miles over ten days which helped us to acclimatise before a four stage climb. It was mentally and physically draining but to reach the top was an incredible feeling.

“It was great to meet the Mount St Mary’s pupils and use my experiences to hopefully inspire them for the future. It is so important for children to follow their dreams and believe they can achieve whatever path they choose in life.”

Introduced at an early age to walking and climbing by his parents, the first peak Tom climbed was Ama Dablam in the Himalayas.

He has climbed four of the seven summits, Kilimanjaro, Aconcagua, Elbrus and Everest, and has skied peaks such as Mont Blanc and the Matterhorn.

Toby Leadbetter, Assistant Head - Academic, Mount St Mary’s College, said: “Tom was a real inspiration to our pupils showing that, with drive, determination and positive attitude, they can achieve anything they want to in life.

“The talk was one in a series at the school this academic year designed to give children a wide range of opportunities and diverse challenges beyond the classroom to build their self esteem and support them to realise their potential.”