Press Releases

Date 12-10-2003

Wheelchair Explorer Glenn Shaw Sets Out For Mount Everest

12.10. 2003. London. Disabled explorer Glenn Shaw leaves the UK on the 14th October for a unique expedition to the world's highest mountain, Mount Everest.

Glenn has a medical condition known as 'Brittle Bones'. He knows that the slightest knock can result in a broken limb. A simple fall might kill him outright. As a result, Glenn is confined to a wheelchair. But Glenn is an explorer, and treats his physical disability as simply another obstacle to overcome.

Glenn met the first man to climb Everest, Sir Edmund Hillary, whilst on his first expedition to reach Mount Everest in 1997. But the expedition ended in near-disaster when Glenn and a Sherpa slipped and fell at an altitude of 13,000 feet (3900m). Glenn's considerable upper body strength prevented both men from going over the edge of a precipice. However, during the self-rescue Glenn broke both legs in eight places and he was forced to abandon his first attempt to reach his favourite mountain. Undaunted, Glenn is now making final preparations for his second attempt to reach Base Camp. As leader of the expedition, Glenn has assembled a strong team, which includes an Everest summit veteran.

"I feel that my expedition is a fitting tribute to Hillary and Tenzing 50 years on since the first ascent," explained Glenn. "I won't get to the top of Everest, but this will be my personal summit."

The expedition aims to reach Base Camp - at an altitude of 17,000ft (5200m) - at the end of the month.

After arriving in the capital of Nepal, Kathmandu, the team will board another aircraft and fly past Everest in order to reach the historic city of Lhasa in Tibet. They will then travel overland to the Buddhist monastery at Rongbuk, which was visited by all the British Everest expeditions of the 1920s and 30s. After receiving a blessing from the resident monks, Glenn will attempt to wheel himself to the Base Camp with the aid of his unique Swiss-built 'Everest Wheelchair' which has been constructed by Invacare/Küschall to Glenn's specifications.

The Glenn Shaw Mount Everest Expedition 2003 will be celebrating the European Year of People with Disabilities 2003. In addition, the team are aiming to raise funds and awareness to support The Outward Bound Trust, a national educational charity that inspires young people from disadvantaged backgrounds and abilities to fulfil their potential through challenging outdoor experiences, raising self-esteem, and preparing them to face the future.
Glenn is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, he has also been past recipient of a ski scholarship from the American National Sports Centre For The Disabled. In 2001, he was awarded a Winston Churchill Memorial Trust Fellowship, which enabled him to undertake a voyage by sea kayak around part of the Antarctic coastline. Glenn has also worked with Brunel University's Research and Development Team to develop kayaking equipment for fellow disabled explorers.


Glenn Shaw 07880 507263, email: (until October 12th and from November 5th)
at all other times Jon Fuller 01707 371288, 07973 243914 email:

Notes: See for high resolution photography, biography, sponsors and details of the expedition. For details of The Outward Bound Trust visit

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