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The duo plan to climb Mount Kilimanjaro for the charity Smile4Wessex

Two men are set to tackle Mount Kilimanjaro in a bid to raise funds for a Hampshire charity.

Alan Finden, 60, from Locks Heath, and Nick Bowler, recently retired from BAE Systems, plan to climb Africa’s highest peak in July in aid of Smile4Wessex.

The two face a grueling climb, equivalent to 2,500 flights of stairs or five and a half for Mount Snowdon.

In June 2002, Nick’s 15-year-old son Richard Bowler suffered a fatal subarachnoid haemorrhage while training with the local youth football club in Sarisbury Green.

This devastating event led to the establishment of Smile4Wessex, a charity which supports the Wessex Neurological Centre, which provides brain injury and disease care to over 3 million people in the south of England and the Channel Islands.

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The center also hosts nearly 8,500 inpatients and 45,000 outpatients annually.

Alan said: “None of us are in our prime so it’s going to be quite a challenge with a lot of training involved.”

They’ve already spent hours climbing any hill they can find, from Old Winchester Hill to days in the Brecon Beacons and Snowdonia.

“Strengthening the knees and ankles is especially important at our age, so we have a lot of gym visits with a rigorous routine,” he added.

The funds were raised through a JustGiving page, with both men hoping to make their incredible journey worthwhile.