Many local clubs have been setting themselves uphill tasks for charity lately – but Herbrandston AFC took that notion to the extreme last week.

The club collectively climbed more than 77,000 metres for PATCH (Pembrokeshire Action to Combat Hardship).

Originally, they only set out to scale the combined height of Snowdon, Mont Blanc, and Everest – the tallest mountains in Wales, Europe, and the world – in only seven days. Their 'Three Peaks for PATCH' initiative was to be measured not my metres run or walked, but by the collective ‘elevation gain’ on Strava.

But like other clubs of late, their efforts gained momentum with many club members past and present chipping in to help – and their target of 14,488 metres was smashed within days.

So the goalposts were altered so that eventually they scaled the highest mountain on each continent of the world, plus a few others, to complete their target more than five times over. Their exact final total was 77,381 metres.

Prior to starting out the club hoped to raise £500, but have also easily exceeded that with more than £3,300 made thus far.

And first team manager Sean Thomas admitted those involved had found the response overwhelming.

“It started out as a senior team event but the mini’s, juniors, committee members, supporters and people from the village all wanted to help out and it was great to see the community spirit shine through. There was a huge buzz the whole week.

“When your running up and down Lower Priory Hill seeing a friendly face or hearing a toot of the horn really does help.”

And Thomas added the club was happy to help an ‘amazing’ charity, as well as praising the efforts of everyone involved.

“They (PATCH) do amazing work for the families in our local community. They provide a service that needs to be accessed so much more in these difficult times and with people out of work and less able to donate we wanted to help them out.

“The effort that went in throughout the whole club was phenomenal.

“Marc Gelona climbed well over 500 metres every day while Wolfie Ackermann did a marathon that climbed 1300 metres. We also had ‘non-traditional’ runners doing half marathons and 10 kilometre treks up and down monster hills.

“I genuinely could not have asked for better from players, the club, or community and it made me feel very proud to be part of it.

“It was mentally and physically draining for everyone but worth it for a fantastic cause. Waking up and seeing people had been out in black and yellow at 5.30am before work for the cause was an inspirational start to the day.”

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