Sky’s the limit for Todmorden brothers

A dream came true for a Todmorden family when two disabled brothers were hoisted to the top of Stoodley Pike.

Parents Eldred and Joanne never thought their sons Andrew, 14, and 12-year-old Nathan, Greenwood, whose cerebral palsy condition means both are permanent wheelchair users, would never reach the viewing platform of the iconic monument that presides over the 1,300 feet Pennine hill which they can see from their Phoenix Court family home.

Nathan, centre, with brother Andrew, parents Joanne and Eldred, left, and volunteers from Calder Valley Search and Rescue Team at Stoodley Pike

Nathan, centre, with brother Andrew, parents Joanne and Eldred, left, and volunteers from Calder Valley Search and Rescue Team at Stoodley Pike

“It’s a dream come true. As a family with two disabled children, we never thought we would even get close to Stoodley Pike. It was an incredible day one we will never forget,” said an emotional Joanne.

“We can see Stoodley Pike from our house and the boys know all about it but we never dreamt this would happen. It’s hard work even going for a walk around Hollingworth Lake.

“Now, the boys can look from our house and say ‘we’ve been there’,” she said.

Eldred said: “The smile on our boys’ faces throughout said it all. This was a gift no money could buy - thanks to Martin at Ravenscliffe and Mick at CVSRT - we were extremely proud to be a part of this special day.”

Nathan with Calder Valley Search and Rescue Team members with Stoodley Pike monument in the background

Nathan with Calder Valley Search and Rescue Team members with Stoodley Pike monument in the background

On Sunday, the dream became reality when Andrew and Nathan were transported and rope lifted to the viewing platform of the monument by Calder Valley Search and Rescue Team (CVSRT).

A team of 28 CVSRT volunteers, Joanne, 34, husband Eldred, 47, friends and family including Andrew and Nathan’s grandad Pete, auntie Sarah and cousin Bethany along with Ravenscliffe High School, Halifax, and Ryburn Valley High School, Sowerby, staff, friends accompanied Andrew and Nathan on their epic adventure.

The unforgettable Aim Higher challenge was part of a community fundraising walking effort by Nathan’s Halifax special high school.

On Sunday, The Ravenscliffe High School, CVSRT and Halifax Courier Spring Walk for Spring Hall - a sponsored community walk - was attended by hundreds of Ravenscliffe staff, pupils and friends, employees from Aspire and Lloyds, Halifax, and others who walked along canal towpath from Hebden Bridge and Brighouse to Copley Cricket Club, Copley, Halifax, to raise money for a new sixth and community centre for Ravenscliffe High School, Skircoat Green, due to open at nearby Spring Hall in September 2016.

Andrew being carried to Stoodley Pike viewing platform

Andrew being carried to Stoodley Pike viewing platform

Joanne, Eldred and their sons were cheered on by hundreds of well-wishers as an inspirational video of the boys challenge was played after the event at Copley Cricket Club.

Ravenscliffe High School head teacher Martin Moorman, said: “Andrew and Nathan made living history: as I suspect, they are the first non ambulant teenage brothers to get up Stoodley Pike and the tower.

“The day was all about raising aspirations for our students - you can’t get any more aspirational than this.”

So far, Spring Walk for Spring Hall and Aim Higher has raised around £4,000.

Andrew Greenwood, 14, being hoisted to the top of Stoodley Pike, Todmorden

Andrew Greenwood, 14, being hoisted to the top of Stoodley Pike, Todmorden

To donate to the Aim Higher challenge see virginmoneygiving.com/aimhigher or virginmoneygiving.com/bigwalkingweekend

Aim Higher

Aim Higher