A GROUP of men inspired to scale the heights of Britain by a Dorchester teenager’s brave battle with illness have handed over their funds.

Al Hodges, Ade Burton, Billy Wilson, Jon Massey and Dave Cutting took on the Three Peaks Challenge, climbing Ben Nevis, Scafell Poke and Snowdon within 24 hours.

They decided to embark on the challenge to raise funds for the Steve Charles Help a Friend charity.

The fund helps a number of local people who need support to receive treatment for serious illnesses including 14-year-old Rian Harvey who suffers from acute myeloid leukaemia.

The group heard from Rian’s dad Kieron, who is a friend of theirs, about how much the charity had helped his son and set about training for the challenge.

They took on the coastal paths of Dorset as preparation before heading out on their mission with support driver Mark Machin.

The group’s efforts raised £3,000 for their chosen cause and they handed over a cheque to Jack Daniels from the Help a Friend charity at a special presentation event at the Blue Vinney pub in Puddletown.

Al said it was great to meet Jack in person after being in regular email contact with him over the training period.

He said: “It was nice for us all to get together and nice for us to actually meet Jack.

“He’s been a great support and it was nice to speak to him and hear a bit more about Help a Friend.

“We have said to Jack if we were to do anything else like this again we will be doing it for them.”

Al said all the team were grateful for the fantastic support they received, that helped them raise such a large total for the cause.

He said: “None of us have ever really done anything like that and we were surprised by everybody’s generosity, we didn’t expect to raise over £3,000.”

Dad Kieron said Rian had been taken aback by the ‘sheer generosity’ shown by people raising funds in his name.

The team received support from their employers, with Corbin Industries in Bridport funding the mini bus and Wessex Water supplying £300 of fuel and matching £250 fundraising.

Donations can still be made online at justgiving.com/N3Phelpafriend