/ Mike Banks RIP

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John Alcock - on 13 Feb 2013
I've been abroad skiing and climbing so apologies if you know this already, but one of Britain's greatest climbers and explorers Mike Banks has just died aged 90.
I was lucky enough to have the honour of filming a documentary on Mike some years ago. His exploits ranged from making the first ascent of Rakaposhi, to a 2 year first crossing of Greenland to for many years being the oldest man to climb the Old Man of Hoy. Many of his expeditions were turned into B movies- shown in cinemas before the main film of the day.
He was a tough former Royal Marine Commando (who instigated NATO's arctic warfare training programme), a vehement vegan, a perfect gentleman and tremendous fun.
In his later years he persuaded SAGA to sponsor him to lead expeditions to unclimbed peaks in China.
He was one of those few people who have dreams and carry them out.
ThunderCat - on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to John Alcock:

Sounds like quite a chap who led a pretty spectacular life.
balmybaldwin - on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to John Alcock:

Sad news, was there a post recently with someone asking for his contact details?
johncoxmysteriously - on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to John Alcock:

I didn't know - thanks for posting. RIP; a sad day, though of course it's a bit absurd to be sad at someone dying at such an age after a life so well lived.

I remember MB and his friends (Hamish Nicol in particular) in the Count House at Easter 20 years ago.

jcm
Postmanpat on 13 Feb 2013
HappyTrundler - on 14 Feb 2013
In reply to John Alcock:

I remember seeing him down at Undercover Rock, in Bristol, cheerful and bright as a button, I hope I keep going as long as him....I wonder if his ashes were sprinkled at Chair Ladder, his favourite crag?...
johncoxmysteriously - on 21 Feb 2013
In reply to Postmanpat:

Strange they don't mention 'Commando Climber', which I would have thought will be what he will be most remembered for.

jcm
Sean Kelly - on 21 Feb 2013
In reply to John Alcock: He certainly lived his life to the full!
lowersharpnose - on 21 Feb 2013
In reply to John Alcock:

I think I bumped in to him whilst he was out climbing with you some years ago. I am trying to think where, perhaps suspension bridge buttress.

Typically old school unassuming type. A long life, well lived.
Bob Moulton - on 24 Feb 2013
In reply to John Alcock: The funeral has been arranged for 15.30 hrs on Monday March 4th at Canford Crematorium, Bristol BS9 3PQ (fairly straightforward access off the A4162 in the Westbury on Trym quadrant of the City)

There will be a reception at Long Ashton Golf Club for 5.30 p.m. after the cremation Address: Clarken Coombe, Long Ashton, Bristol BS41 9DW. Website www.longashtongolfclub.co.uk (again easy access off the B3128, S.W. of the City)

If you wish to attend the reception please e-mail Miss Jean Douglas, who is arranging the funeral.
royal - on 24 Feb 2013
In reply to John Alcock:
RIP, an amazing and tough man.
Rob Exile Ward on 24 Feb 2013
In reply to Postmanpat: Met him at Curbar 20 years ago. Enthusiastic, (even then he was over 70!), cheerful, friendly, amusing. Not many like him.

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