Most of us can watch an old episode of the holiday programme “Wish You Were Here” without it having the life-changing effect that it had on postman Edward Buckingham. For Ed, a young man from humble origins in Cornwall, the draw of Kilimanjaro and the high mountains of the world would change his life forever. It would also very nearly end his life during a fall from high on Cho Oyu, the sixth highest mountain in the world.
Drawn to high places, Ed embarked on a journey that would take him to the summit of the highest mountain on every continent. His seven summits actually involved ten summits – he climbed the highest summit in Western Europe, Mont Blanc, and the highest in Continental Europe, Mount Elbrus, as well as summiting Australia’s Mount Kosciusko and the far more remote Papua New Guinea summit of Carstenz Pyramid, the highest point in Australasia. And,of course, Cho Oyu.