Peak Performance. Ingleborough’s sporting legacy.

Victoria Benn
 North Craven 
 Heritage Trust 

Kilnsey: Tickled Trout (2020)

Thousands of people each year undertake the Three Peaks walk, many raising money for charity. Some of them complete the course looking exhausted but with the glow of achievement whilst others give up due to the weather or exhaustion, yet vowing to return the next year. But this book is not about them: it is about the super humans who undertake the Three Peaks Race, the Cyclo-Cross or the Fellsman Hike. As sport is all about records: the fastest time to complete the race or the number of times someone has won it you might think that this would be a very boring book. Not so!

There is plenty of historical interest. Did you know that in the nineteenth century there were horse races around the circumference of Ingleborough’s summit? And that there had been a scheme to run an electric tramway to the top? There are also some superb photographs. One in particular caught my attention: there is one of Fred Brown displaying all the prizes he had won. How many clocks does one man need?

You may, like me, prefer a more leisurely approach to walking our three peaks but you have to admire the physical and mental stamina of these sportspeople. I didn’t expect to enjoy this book but was pleasantly surprised.