Duncan Drake R.I.P

© Escher
On or around Sunday 9th September 2007 Duncan Drake (49) took his own life.

Duncan had climbed at the highest standards since 1980 when he and Pete Gomersall put up one of Britain's first E5s. He climbed grade VI on ice, A4/5 aid routes and recently F8a sports routes. He also caved at a high standard, was noticed by the British ski jumping team when one of his first jumps came close to the British record and had a natural ability at any sport that was risky enough to interest him.

Four years ago he suffered a mental breakdown and overnight he changed from being one of the fixtures at Leeds climbing wall to giving up climbing altogether. He has been struggling with mental illness ever since. That struggle has now ended.

Because Duncan had climbed for so long many of his earlier climbing partners have moved on and are difficult to contact so could anybody who knew him please pass on the sad news to those who might want to know.

A date for the funeral has not been set yet but is likely to be around 19th-21st September. It will be posted here when it is known.

There is a thread at commemorating Duncan's life. Click 'read more' below.

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13 Sep, 2007
Grim news.I suppose it puts some of the problems on these postings into perspective
13 Sep, 2007
What a shame. He was quite a character. The Ent ™
13 Sep, 2007
One of Duncans best tricks was on The Butcher. He'd wait for it to get busy on the crag and the cliff top then solo up the route. When he got to the big jug he'd pretend ot slip and cut loose screaming. The Ent ™
13 Sep, 2007
really sorry to hear it.
13 Sep, 2007
I worked with Duncan at DR walls and new him from the Yorkshire climbing scene for years. Top guy, not sure what else to say..... Will miss his p*** taking. Phoned a few mutual friends.... Dolomight please make sure you let us know when the funeral will be. Ol
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