Published: 17:00, 04 August 2014
They have done it! Brave schoolboy Jake Rafferty has achieved his goal and climbed one of Britain’s biggest peaks in a specially adapted wheelchair with the help of 20 police officers.
And the team who made it to the summit of Mount Snowdon in an amazing two hours and 50 minutes may have smashed a record.
The guide who led them had estimated that it would take the party up to five hours to get 3,560ft to the top.
Dad Adrian, who along with wife Emma and daughter Jess, accompanied Jake, 11 on the challenge, is trying to confirm whether they are they have become the quickest to complete the ascent using the mountain trike.
And the family from Halling have also broken another target they set themselves to raise money for Spinal Research UK.
Adrian, 46: said: "The support on the just giving site has been astonishing. We set out to raise £500 for the charity. At the last count, we were just approaching £2,500.”
They set off from the family home in Britannia Close on their their seven hour journey to Snowdonia, north Wales on Friday and started their trek at 7.35am on Saturday in torrential rain and strong winds.
The team of “mules” who helped to push, hail and lift Jake were like Adrian and Emma, 34, all Metropolitan officers in the Territorial Support Group.
Adrian said: “Jake was a real trouper. He insisted on operating the chair where he could and always had control of the brakes and steering.
He added: “We would have a person pushing on the rear T-bar, which resembled a bicycle handle bar.
"We also had two mules in front who had ropes attached to the front of the chair, plus two supporters on the sides.
"As we approached large rocks, boulders and particularly loose shale areas, the guys would lift the chair with Jake, above or around the obstacle.”
The weather had improved and they were able to enjoy the stunning views by the time they started the descent which took two hours and 52 minutes.
Jake, the eldest of five children, faced death after an aggressive tumour covering eight vertebrae was discovered in his spine two years ago,
The only option was massive surgery and he now faces the rest of his life confined to a wheelchair.
Despite being left paralysed from the chest down, the sports-mad lad has not let his disability stop him lead as normal a life as possible.
Dad Adrian said: “The long and short of it is that there is no way on this planet we would not have completed it. Now we are looking at an even tougher challenge."
Donate online at https://www.justgiving.com/Jacob-Rafferty-Snowdenchallenge/
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