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Westbourne School Pupil Conquers Cuillin Ridge in Impressive Feat of Mountaineering

We are thrilled to share the remarkable achievement of one of our pupils, Edward Taylor-James, who recently showcased extraordinary courage and skill during a challenging mountaineering expedition.

At 8am on Sunday morning, Edward, alongside three fellow members of the Phoenix Mountaineering Club, embarked on an ambitious journey from the Coruisk Memorial hut, situated on the picturesque shores of Loch na Cuilce. Their mission: to conquer the formidable Cuillin Ridge, with its daunting 3000′ ascent.

Despite facing unusually warm and dry weather conditions, the team encountered formidable obstacles, including swollen rivers and cascading waterfalls, as a result of recent heavy rainfall. Negotiating treacherous terrain and steep cliffs, Edward and his companions demonstrated resilience and determination as they navigated their way through the challenging landscape.

Unfortunately, one member of the team was forced to withdraw due to injury, yet undeterred, Edward continued to lead the remaining group with unwavering determination. Over the course of the next seven hours, he guided his companions through technical sections and precarious abseils, eventually making camp in a cave below Skye’s highest peak.


Enduring a cold and wet night, the team awoke to a dry yet blustery morning, ready to face the next leg of their journey. Over the following six hours, Edward exhibited exceptional leadership as they tackled more technical climbs and traversed exposed mountain terrain, employing ‘short-roping’ techniques to ensure safety.

Their resilience was put to the test when adverse weather conditions descended upon them, limiting visibility and bringing high winds to the ridge. Despite the challenges, Edward and his team made the difficult decision to descend into the neighbouring valley of Glenbrittle.

While thunderstorms ultimately cut short their expedition, Edward’s achievement remains nothing short of commendable. Summiting seven Munroes over a thirty-six-hour period is a testament to his skill, courage, and unwavering determination.

“Edward’s incredible feat on the Cuillin Ridge exemplifies the adventurous spirit and resilience we foster here at Westbourne School. His determination to overcome challenges and lead his team to success is truly inspirational.” – Chris Hattam, Head Teacher

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