MUSICIANS are preparing to break an off beat record.
On Saturday, 30 brass players will begin the Three Peaks Challenge with their instruments strapped to their backs.
Each member of the group will attempt to climb the highest mountains in England, Scotland and Wales: then play a national song of each country at the summit – Flower of Scotland at Ben Nevis, Jerusalem on Scafell Pike and Land of My Fathers on Snowdon.
It is thought that it will be the first time the challenge – Three Peaks: Three Pieces – has been attempted by a band, which aims to raise £10,000 for the Multiple Sclerosis Society.
West Boldon hiker Dan Knott got involved after a friend pointed out the Facebook page to him in January.
Since then the 29-year-old has lost almost five stone training for the triple challenge.
“Someone suggested it to me and I just thought it seemed like a good thing to get involved in,” said Dan, who has dropped from little under 20 stone, to under 15 stone.
“I’ve been attending a bootcamp three or four times a week and doing lots of hill walking.
“It’s been really good. I’ve never done the Three Peaks before but I’ve always been keen on mountain climbing. I was nervous but we’ve done a practice walk and that went well, and I’m looking forward to it now.”
So far the group of walkers, which was put together by organiser James Parkinson, whose mother has suffered from MS for 20 years, on Facebook, has raised £5,422 from 264 donations on a Virgin Money Giving internet donations page.
“I’ve been promoting the page on line and when I’ve been out training I try to tell people about it,” said Dan, who will carry his tuba, which weighs more than one stone, up the mountains.
“I wear my T-shirt and try to raise awareness that way.
“I think when James came up with the idea it was one of those that seem good in the pub, but it has actually worked really well in practice too.”
The walkers are aiming to complete the challenge by 4pm on Sunday.
To donate to the cause, visit www.virginmoneygiving.com/3peaksbrass.