Firefighter brothers conquer tower climb in memory of Grenfell victims

Firefighter brothers completed an incredible feat at the weekend when they climbed 69,000 steps to raise more than £3,000 for The Grenfell Foundation and The Firefighters Charity.

Mike and Kev Sutcliffe took on the challenge of climbing Bridgewater Place tower in Leeds

Mike and Kev Sutcliffe took on the challenge of climbing Bridgewater Place tower in Leeds 72 times to symbolise each life lost at the devastating Grenfell Tower fire in 2017.

Kev, 43, is a firefighter with West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service (WYFRS) while Mike, 41, is a Watch Manager with North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service (NYFRS).

Kev Sutcliffe said: “We went up and down the steps for around nine hours on Saturday – it was hard work, but also an emotional day as we remembered those who had lost their lives in that horrific fire six years ago.

“Money is still coming in, but we are set to have raised over £3,000 which will be split between the two charities. I’d like to thank everyone involved for all their help and support including both brigades, my watch, and Bridgewater Place for allowing us the use of the building.”

Mike said: “We are both always on the lookout for the next physical challenge to undertake. We wanted to take on an endurance challenge with a difference, to raise money for two worthy charities, which we respect and have a connection with.”

Kev added: “We are really pleased with how it went on Saturday, and we hope we can do something similar again next year – which should give our legs time to recover as they are pretty sore after Saturday’s challenge.”

The total of 69,000 steps climbed on Saturday is the equivalent of 67 Big Bens or three-quarters of the way to the summit of Mount Everest.

The brothers have two children each and have both served in the Royal Engineers before leaving to join the fire service. Both brothers received the ‘Silver Axe Award’ for finishing as the top recruit on their respective courses.

West Yorkshire’s Chief Fire Officer John Roberts said: “Congratulations to the brothers for completing this test of endurance in memory of those who lost their lives in the Grenfell Tower fire – all the money raised is going to two very worthy charities.”

North Yorkshire’s Chief Fire Officer Jonathan Dyson, said: “This is an awe-inspiring feat that Mike and Kev have undertaken on behalf of two extremely important charities. Thank you both.”