The 54th annual Dartmoor trek hailed a success, with more than 2,000 teenagers braving the foul weather, including two Bideford teams dedicating their effort to the memory of scout leader Barrie Cadd.
TWO teams of scouts from Bideford have taken part in the annual Ten Tors Challenge on Dartmoor in memory of one of their former leaders.
The groups from Torridge Explorer Scouts joined 2,250 teenagers for the two day hike across difficult terrain organised by the Army.
Weather conditions were described as ‘atrocious’, with teams battered by wet and windy weather, but organisers had brought in new routes this year to improve safety and reported eight out of 10 participants were able to finish, with 450 forced to dorp out.
More than 1,000 Army Reservists plus support vehicles, equipment and two Sea King helicopters from RNAS Yeovilton were on hand throughout the event.
The Explorer scouts dedicated their effort to Barrie Cadd, who died last summer aged 23 in Spain’s Picos Mountains.*
This year was the first time Torridge Explorers had entered a 55 mile team, all of whom had previously been coached by Barrie, who also worked at Calvert Trust Exmoor.
Despite losing two members through injury they completed the trek within the allotted time. The 35 mile team was unfortunately forced to withdraw on Saturday night after three members were hit by injury and sickness.
Team manager Angela Moore praised the efforts of all the young people whose preparations had been severely affected by the weather during the run up to the event with access to Dartmoor being restricted, and said they were truly wonderful.
Angela, who is stepping down as team manager after 14 years, said her team of dedicated leaders and helpers had been magnificent.
Other North Devon entrants included two teams of six from Great Torrington School, which both successfully completed the 35 mile challenge in good time, following months of training and determination in all weather conditions.
As well as the Army, support for Ten Tors came from the police, Dartmoor Search and Rescue and the British Red Cross.
Event director Brigadier Piers Hankinson said everyone had been accounted for and was now safely off the moor. He congratulated all teams and team members for their preparation and participation.
* Barrie Cadd lost his life while assessing a Duke of Edinburgh expedition in Spain and was not climbing, as previously reported. We apologise for any distress that might have been caused by the initial incorrect report.