A dedicated team of nine volunteers from Barnstaple-based Actavis had more than a mountain to climb as they raised £17,500 for the Devon Air Ambulance. With managing director Sara Vincent the eight sales and marketing team members, dubbed the Actavis Exp

A dedicated team of nine volunteers from Barnstaple-based Actavis had more than a mountain to climb as they raised £17,500 for the Devon Air Ambulance.

With managing director Sara Vincent the eight sales and marketing team members, dubbed the "Actavis Explorers," scaled three of the highest mountains in Britain in less than 24 hours to successfully complete the Three Peaks Challenge.

They began on Scotland's Ben Nevis at 5.30am one chilly September morning, before going on to Scafell Pike in the Lake District and finished up at the top of Mount Snowdon in Wales at 3am.

The gruelling challenge was suggested at a meeting to discuss activities for a "team building exercise" but the idea was enthusiastically embraced and soon the whole team was busy running, walking and cycling for the big event.

When the day arrived, everyone managed to make it through the challenge and emerge tired, sore but triumphant.

"The weather was appalling, pretty much throughout," said Sara.

"We had to cross a swollen river at one point on Scafell - in fact we saw almost every type of weather - hail, rain, wind and mist!

"It certainly wasn't something you do for the views because for most of it we didn't see anything!

"The team members got to know each other very well and there was a real sense of purpose about it all. The Devon Air Ambulance certainly struck a chord and we received fantastic donations from colleagues friends, family, competitors and suppliers."

In the end the team raised twice as much as it set out to do and Helena Holt, chief executive of the Devon Air Ambulance Trust, thanked all of them for such a great effort.