Sky’s the limit for IT man’s adventure

Roger Davies
Roger Davies

An adventurous IT worker is tackling a gruelling trek in preparation for an expedition to the South Pole in 2015.

Roger Davies, who works at Denaploy, in The Lawn, St Leonards, teamed up with Bexhill’s triple world record holder Jan Meek to form the Unfinished Business Society in honour of the explorer Tom Crean and others.

Since its launch, the group has put together teams which have subsequently climbed Kilimanjaro, trekked in the Atlas Mountains, and managed to ski to the North Pole.

The latest adventure got under way earlier this month when the team left the society’s HQ in London for Everest’s Basecamp. The 18-day journey includes a hike along the Dudh Khosi river, a climb to the bustling Sherpa settlement of Namche Bazaar and a trek along hidden valleys, before tackling the 5,545-metre elevation. The eight-man team will trek more than 10 miles daily for a week to reach the summit at Basecamp and experience standing face to face with Mount Everest in Nepal.

Jan said: “Altitude training is key to any South Pole success, this is our start, Kilimanjaro in September this year is the next hurdle and part of my own unfinished business agenda.”

According to Wikipedia in 2006 Jan and her son Daniel Byles were belatedly awarded a Guinness World Record certificate for being the first mother and son team to row the Atlantic in 1997/8. In April/May 2007, she and her son became the first mother-and-son team to walk/ski to any Pole. In 2008 Jan became the oldest woman ever to walk/ski to the Magnetic North Pole at 62.

Roger explained the decision behind founding Unfinished Business. He said: “We wanted to avoid the almost commercial extreme adventure approach and ensure that all the society expedition groups were made up of interesting people committed to the challenge and prepared to contribute to the well-being of others through charitable giving and our schools speakers programme which Jan leads.

“This is not an easy trek and final part is especially challenging, but it is very rewarding once you see the spectacular view from the top.” The eventual trip to the South Pole will mirror, and hopefully complete, the journey of Tom Crean, who accompanied Shackleton and Scott on their trips to the South Pole.