Retired Notts Chief Inspector raises thousands for Rainbows

Barry spent three weeks hiking 100 miles across the Andes for Rainbows Hospice.

A retired Nottinghamshire Chief Inspector who has completed some of the world’s toughest treks has raised £1,100 with his latest challenge.

In January, Barry Harper (65), of Westwood, spent three weeks hiking 100 miles across the Andes, scaling heights of 4,000 metres. He raised money for Rainbows.

Over the years, adventurer Barry has raised thousands of pounds for our charity by completing extreme treks including walking to the South and North Poles, the Great Slave Lake in Canada and the Inca trail. He has also climbed Mount Kilimanjaro, Everest Base Camp and Mount Blanc.

I just love completing extreme challenges and to raise money for Rainbows by being sponsored for some of my events, is wonderful,” said Barry. “There is a very simple answer as to why I support Rainbows and that is I couldn’t do what the staff do. The end-of-life care provided for the children is incredible. It is an amazing charity, absolutely amazing.

The Andes trek, which I did with four friends, was really hard. There were a lot of miles but it was more about the altitude. I took a little Bow Bear teddy with me, which is the charity’s mascot. He has been all over the world with me. I called this bear Andy Bow.

My toughest challenge by far was the Great Slave Lake. It was minus 55 degrees and I nearly died several times. In the North Pole I came face to face with wolves and polar bears.”

Barry, who is also a volunteer with us and has helped out at many events, has completed 13 marathons and 100 half marathons. He said his love for adventures and walking began as a child when he was fascinated with reading atlases and the exploits of Arctic and Antarctic explorers, his favourite was Nansen.

My dream is to do the ‘The Triple Challenge’, where people do the North Pole, South Pole and Everest,” said Barry. “There are not many people on that list. I am very lucky and I always have the backing of my wife, Elizabeth, and two daughters, Lindsey and Victoria. Everyone is incredibly supportive of my challenges.”

Barry worked for Nottinghamshire Police for 32 years and retired as Chief Inspector in 2008. Now he works part-time as a tour guide at Nottingham Castle; a Drug Abuse Resistance Education officer giving talks in primary schools; and a steward supervisor at Trent Bridge Cricket Ground.

Clare Wainwright, Rainbows Community Fundraiser, added: “Barry certainly has so many tales to tell and he often gives talks to groups about his adventures and donates the money to Rainbows. He is such a dedicated supporter and volunteer and we really wouldn’t be able to provide the services we do to hundreds of families without people like Barry. We can’t thank him enough.”