North Pole trek is the aim for Harborough fundraiser

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Mark West has a five-year plan for charity – and it will hopefully peak in 2020 with a daring trek to the North Pole.

Harborough man Mark, a manager for an engineering company, has a busy schedule of charity feats to complete before his polar trek. But the final result, he hopes, will be £20,000 raised for the health charity Lupus UK.

The 47-year-old’s wife Hayley West was diagnosed with lupus 15 years ago.

“The North Pole came about because I wanted to do something that would really make a difference and help lupus,” said Mark.

“Because of the dangers, I am going to go with a company – Charity Challenge.

“Since 2007, I have been trying to raise awareness and funds to support the lupus charity and help find a cure.”

Lupus is the name given to a collection of auto-immune diseases, in which the human immune system becomes too active, and starts to attack normal, healthy tissue.

Mark’s five-year plan before the North Pole challenge involves raising awareness of lupus as well as funds for the North Pole trek.

He needs to raise £55,000, of which £20,000 will go to the charity. In the meantime, he has a tough training and money-raising schedule.

In June this year he will be doing Ironman Wimbleball, Exmoor, a 70.3- mile triathlon.

In June 2016 he will tackle Ironman Bolton, Lancashire, a 140.6-mile triathlon, which includes a full marathon run.

Then in November 2016 he will do the Ridgeway Multistage Ultra marathon, Buckinghamshire, three days of running, 30 miles a day.

In June 2017 he will be back doing the Bolton event and in June 2018 there will be a 24-hour London to Paris cycle ride of 240 miles in 24 hours non-stop.

Then in July 2019 he will take on the coast-to-coast crossing, a three-day, 200-mile mountain bike race from the west coast to the east coast of England.

It culminates in the North Pole Trek in February 2020.

You can follow Mark’s progress by visiting his blog at markwest1588.wix.com/markslupus.

Or you can donate to Mark’s amazing five-year charity venture, at his justgiving page at www.justgiving.com/Mark-West8.