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Peaks are alive with the sound of music

By MIG: Leek Post and Times  |  Posted: September 17, 2013

Leek High School music teacher Katie Raisbeck at the top of Snowdon.

Leek High School music teacher Katie Raisbeck at the top of Snowdon.

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A MUSIC teacher from Leek has taken part in a triple high altitude concert challenge.

A brass band made up of 30 musicians from across the country - including Leek High School's music teacher Katie Raisbeck - conquered the infamous Three Peaks Challenge complete with instruments last month, raising more than £15,000 for the MS Society of Great Britain.

The ensemble, called Three Peaks Brass, was triumphant in the challenge to play a tune at the top of all three mountains, the highest in Scotland, England and Wales, within 24 hours.

The band played the countries' respective national songs on each peak Flower of Scotland at the summit of Ben Nevis, Jerusalem on Scafell Pike and Land of my Fathers on Snowdon to the delight and bemusement of other walkers, some of whom made donations on the spot.

Katie said: "It was a massive challenge that took a huge amount of determination from every single player. The support from friends, families, the brass band community, other walkers and even total strangers was a great boost.

This challenge really seemed to capture people's imagination and to have smashed our original fundraising target of £10,000 so spectacularly makes it doubly worthwhile."

The challenge was not without incident some members were obliged to turn rescuers when they came across an exhausted female walker struggling on the descent from Ben Nevis in the dark.

The walker later got in touch with the band on Twitter and Facebook to thank them and said: "I dread to think what would have happened if you hadn't all been so nice."

In addition to the 24-hour challenge, Katie and the band have also put on a fundraising concert in Ashton-in-Makerfield near Wigan.

This is thought to be the first time a full brass band which had to work as a team to carry usual walking equipment as well as the full complement of 30 brass instruments including trombones, cornets, euphoniums and tubas weighing 12kg each has completed the Three Peaks Challenge.

The band consists of players from a variety of backgrounds and bands, from Felling Band in Gateshead to East London Brass in the south. Some are absolute beginners, others are experienced players from well known bands such as Brighouse and Rastrick, Fodens, Black Dyke and Grimethorpe Colliery (of Brassed Off fame).

The donation site is still open: virginmoneygiving.com/team/3peaksbrass, and a video of the band playing at the top of Snowdon can be viewed by visiti n g : https://www.facebook.com/photo.php? v=501712716584333.

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