Diabetes sufferer Seth, 5, climbs Ben Nevis for all the 'type 1 warriors'

Seth (right) and his sister Eva at the top of Ben Nevis

Seth (right) and his sister Eva at the top of Ben Nevis - Credit: Townshend family

A "warrior" five-year-old climbed two of the highest peaks in Britain to raise money for diabetes research and prove his condition can't hold him back in life.

Seth Townshend, from Badersfield, climbed Ben Nevis on July 25 and Scafell Pike on July 29 with his eight and 10-year-old sisters and their parents — raising more than £1,000 for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, a charity with the ultimate goal of curing type 1.

From left to right: Luke, Melissa, Eva, Lana and Seth at the top of Ben Nevis

From left to right: Luke, Melissa, Eva, Lana and Seth at the top of Ben Nevis - Credit: Townshend family

Seth's mum and dad, 44 and 41-year-old Melissa and Luke Townshend, said: "He wasn't just doing this climb for himself, but all the type 1 warriors.

"People don't realise how debilitating it is.

"He did pretty much the entire climb by himself.


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"He wanted to do it to prove that having diabetes isn't going to stop him doing anything he wants to do in life.

Seth and his family climbing Ben Nevis

Seth and his family climbing Ben Nevis - Credit: Townshend family

Seth and his family climbing Ben Nevis

Seth and his family climbing Ben Nevis - Credit: Townshend family

"We're so proud of him."

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Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune condition, whereby your pancreas stops producing its own insulin and stops regulating blood sugar levels. 

You can't bring it on through lifestyle and it is currently incurable.

Seth was diagnosed when he was three, and though he copes "extremely well", having to face up to eight daily injections and finger-pricks to monitor sugar levels can be difficult, his mum said.

Seth and his dad Luke climbing to raise awareness about diabetes

Seth and his dad Luke climbing to raise awareness about diabetes - Credit: Townshend family

The Townshend family climbing Ben Nevis for JDRF

The Townshend family climbing Ben Nevis for JDRF - Credit: Townshend family

She explained: "His diagnosis changed our life. It's a 247 condition. The fact he needs injected insulin to stay alive is a scary thought.

"Not only do we have to carb-count all his meals and keep a constant eye on his sugars, but the injections even leave us a bit squeamish."

His dad said: "It took me ages to get used to - it's so horrible having to stick a needle in your child.

"You're supposed to be protecting them, not hurting them."

Seth, who is going into Year 1 in September, has to have his insulin injected and blood sugar monitored by teachers when he is in lessons.

Seth and his family at the top of Scafell Pike

Seth and his family at the top of Scafell Pike - Credit: Townshend family

Mrs Townshend added. "It's a lot more common than people think, and can be really hard to manage."

Offline donations are going to the family's local diabetes youth group, Norwich & District, but to donate to the JDRF pot, follow this link: justgiving.com/fundraising/luke-townshend1

Seth climbing Scafell Pike

Seth climbing Scafell Pike - Credit: Townshend family


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