I have a deep and enduring love of the mountains and in particular Cumbria. I first visited with 1st Bangor Scouts (Northern Ireland) when 14 and now I am fortunate enough to live in the East of Cumbria under the massif of Cross Fell.

I was invited to become a fellow of the Royal Geographical Society in 1995 for my work in creating inclusive expeditions to mountain ranges around the world (see below).  More recently on turning 60 I decided to do a fresh round of the 214 Wainwrights:

I also decided, at long last, to undertake the Mountain Leader qualification which I completed in 2017. For me hill walking is like a metaphor for life: be positive, walk tall, be in balance, focus on the quality of each step and be aware of the small changes in contours all around us.  Contours are our reliable friends.  Paths, walls, fences and even rivers change but the surrounding landscape endures.

My purpose in becoming qualified as a Mountain Leader is to continue a longstanding interest I have in introducing others to the hills- particularly those who feel excluded either through access issues, lack of confidence, lack of knowledge or simply lack of opportunity.


While working for the charity MacIntyre I set up a voluntary adventure club which grew from organising hikes in the Chiltern Hills to more ambitious expeditions to the Alps, Andes, Kilimanjaro and the Himalaya.  I led the first successful expedition involving people with disabilities to the summit of Kilimanjaro in 1988 and supported Paul Sillitoe to set his world altitude record for a person with a learning disability on the North Col of Everest in 2006.

An expedition to Pokalde in Nepal was featured in a documentary on ITV:


It has long been established that adventure activities can play an important part in personal development as explained by my friend Professor David Hopkins- a pioneer in the field:


More recently I have been interested in how the current best evidence in support of wellbeing can be used to enhance the experience of participants in a simple day’s hiking in the hills.  The seminal work of the New Economics Foundation found that wellbeing is enhanced by the balance of 5 things: being active, giving to others, continuing to learn, taking notice of the present and connecting with others.  It is a very simple exercise for anyone to create a wellbeing plan while having the time to reflect and share on a hike.  No need for scary abseils, expensive equipment etc- just a pair of boots, waterproofs, a packed lunch and an open mind.  Oh- and some glorious mountain landscape.

I continue to use the outdoors for my own wellbeing and never cease to learn something new each day I go out.

I work as a Mountain Leader on a part time basis- either privately or for local companies.  If you would like to join me on a walk to create your own wellbeing plan or if you just fancy a day out: a Wainwright peak, a famous Lake District ridge, Cross Fell, off the path exploration, a “bad step” you want to overcome, or to go Stone Age axe hunting etc- for individuals or groups- I will happily plan around your aspirations.

To find out more do please feel free to get in touch- I look forward to hearing from you.

Qualification as Mountain Leader (Nov 2017), Mountain First Aid (January 2020), DBS check (August 2019)

Contact: email: billmumford@cairnstones.uk     tel: 07467 513656    Twitter: @bill_mumford   LinkedIn