Belfast Telegraph

Northern Ireland chippies take carryouts to new heights

Kilimanjaro fundraising duo will cook for climbers

Alan Hanna (left) and Malachy Mallon take a break from training in the Mourne Mountains for their bid to scale Kilimanjaro
Alan Hanna (left) and Malachy Mallon take a break from training in the Mourne Mountains for their bid to scale Kilimanjaro

By Darren McCullins

The owners of two local chip shops are taking on a unique charity challenge.

Alan Hanna of Pitstop Fast Food in Kilkeel and Malachy Mallon of the Dolphin Takeaway in Dungannon will undertake The Kilimanjaro Chippy Challenge, serving up delights for hungry climbers at 15,255ft.

Arriving in Tanzania on September 1, the duo will climb the tallest free-standing mountain in the world, before setting up the highest pop-up fish and chip shop at the Barafu Camp.

They're aiming to raise much-needed funds for the Fishermen's Mission charity as a thank you to the trawler crews who keep their businesses supplied with the sea's bounty.

Alan said he was proud to support the "worthy" charity, which helps those working in the fishing trade, the most dangerous occupation in the UK.

He said: "Malachy and I have seen first-hand the great work the Fishermen's Mission carries out to support the fishermen who put their lives on the line to supply us with product.

"So I suppose the idea was born out of the need to raise awareness and much-needed funds for them.

"Malachy suggested the Kilimanjaro idea to me last year at the National Federation of Fish Friers Annual Ball and I instantly agreed to take up the challenge for this worthy cause.

"All of the donations we can get will make such a difference to those facing hardship."

The Kilimanjaro Chippy Challenge is the latest charity effort for Malachy, after he raised £9,000 by cycling 1,500 miles around the UK, visiting the winners of the Fish and Chip awards 2017.

The pair will climb for eight consecutive days, before cooking fish and chips and a few other favourites for the local orphanage before their record attempt.

A percentage of the funds raised will be donated to the Fortune Kids and Education Foundation Orphanage Centre, which was opened in February 2016 and cares for children under five.

With the trip to Africa looming next month, Alan said they had stepped up their preparations.

"Although I live right in the heart of the Mournes, I had no previous climbing experience, but that has changed since last October," he said.

"I have been out trekking the mountains at least once a week for the last 10 months and this last month we have upped our training, sometimes covering five peaks and a distance of 25km a day."

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