A HAMPSHIRE couple is on a mission to climb three mountains across the UK in memory of a friend who passed away this year.

Ellie Thomson and Zac Silo, who live in Romsey, will attempt the National Three Peaks Challenge to raise £1,620 for the charity Samaritans.

Now, the pair have revealed they want to raise awareness of the charity in a bid to help people who are feeling suicidal after their friend Ruby Leaity, from Southampton, died on July 23.

Ellie, 21, said: "We will be doing the challenge on May 22 next year and the first mountain we will climb is Ben Nevis [in Scotland] when the sun is rising, then Scafell Pike [Cumbria] and Snowdon [Wales] at sundown.

"It is quite an interesting challenge and we have never done anything like this before, so we have got a lot of training to do beforehand.

"We also looked at running 100 miles around the Jurassic Coast as a challenge, but I turned round to Zac and said I would rather climb the three peaks than run 100 miles."

Zac, 30, said: "We want to raise money for the Samaritans because they desperately need the funding and when some people start to feel like all hope is lost then that is when the Samaritans can help.

"Ruby was a colourful and beautiful person who always helped others. She gave all of her love to so many people and we will continue to help people in memory of her."

When asked what he is most excited about with the challenge, Zac said: "I am excited about reaching the summits and taking a moment to think why we have done this.

"I think this will be the most emotional part for Ellie because she will be thinking about Ruby."

To donate to the couple's cause, visit https://bit.ly/3iM4eI2.