Preston man to climb Ben Nevis for neonatal and maternity charity after the safe delivery of his baby girl

Chris is climbing Ben Nevis

A man who once competed in England’s strong man competition has set himself a challenge to climb Scotland’s largest mountain, Ben Nevis, in aid of neonatal and maternity charity Baby Beat.

Chris Wilding, 31, from Preston, decided to set himself the challenge of climbing the highest mountain in the British Isles at 1,345 metres for Baby Beat after the antenatal care his wife, Heather received at Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.Heather, who recently gave birth to a healthy baby girl, Riven, weighing 8Ibs 15oz had a worrying pregnancy, after she and Chris received the news Riven was not developing as expected.

Thankfully, however, Baby Riven was delivered safely on March 26 at Royal Preston Hospital Sharoe Green Maternity Unit.Whilst juggling his new life as a proud Dad, Chris has been preparing for his steep mountain climb locally, recently climbing Lancashire’s Pendle Hill.

“Anybody who knows me will know that cardio is not my thing and this challenge will push me beyond my comfort zone,” said Chris, who will be joined by best friend, David Openshaw from Chorley, who has been helping him to build up his strength through training and nutrition.

Chris Wilding said: “Heather’s pregnancy was an anxious time for us as a family, but we are so fortunate to have safely delivered our healthy baby girl Riven.

“The antenatal care Heather received until Riven was born was kind, caring, and compassionate and this challenge is a way of saying thank you to all of the incredible hospital staff who cared for my family and to help support future families.”

Baby Beat helps to support babies and mothers across Lancashire and South Cumbria, helping to fund specialist equipment, inpatient comforts, and research studies to provide the best care and treatment to expectant mothers and their babies.

Cathy Skidmore, Baby Beat manager, said: “We are delighted for the Wilding family on the safe and healthy arrival of their baby girl Riven and are grateful for Chris’ support to give something back to ensure mothers and babies in our care receive the best patient care.”

Anyone who wishes to support Chris and David’s challenge which will take place in May can sponsor them via their JustGiving page: