South Shields schoolboy reaching for the top with rock climbing skills

A South Shields youngster is reaching for the top as he continues to excel as a competitive rock climber.

By Hayley Lovely
Tuesday, 7th June 2022, 2:48 pm

Will Duncan is continuing to impress in the world of rock climbing, and hopes one day to compete at the Olympics for Team GB.

The 11-year-old took part in the Scottish National Rope Championships last weekend and placed third overall taking home the bronze medal, losing out by only one second.

His efforts saw him beat many current GB development squad boys.

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Rock climber Will Duncan

Will also took part in the Midlands Youth Climbing Series where he finished fifth place taking on both bouldering and ropes climbing. The competition attracted the top climbers from across the UK.

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Will first took up rock climbing at Simonside Climbing Wall at just age five, and took part in his first national championships in November 2021.

He said he loves the feeling of accomplishment when he reaches the top of the wall and how far he has come in the sport

Will in action on a climbing wall.

In 2021 he was accepted onto the Durham Climbing Academy Youth Team and throughout summer he will compete in six rounds of climbing across North East Climbing centres.

Speaking at the time, he said: “I have really enjoyed seeing myself improve and I love being part of the Durham Climbing Academy Youth team,”

He is hoping to each new heights and make Team GB soon.

Dad Scott is thrilled to see how well Will is doing in the sport, he said: “We are delighted with his progress over the past year as he has been part of the academy for a year.

"His progress since the National finals last November is incredible and says a lot about his dedication and very hard work.

“We are hoping he can close the gap and earn a place on the GB development squad for next year but there is a long way and lots of work to still do.”

Climbing made its Olympic debut at the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, Japan, which put it more to the fore in the sporting world.

Two events were held, one each for men and women in a combined format made up of three disciplines lead climbing, speed climbing and bouldering.