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Darren Edwards

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Darren Edwards
Born (1990-07-28) 28 July 1990 (age 33)
East London, England
🏳️ NationalityEnglish
🎓 Alma materUniversity of Westminster
💼 Occupation
Disabled adventurer, inspirational speaker and author
🥚 TwitterTwitter=
label65 = 👍 Facebook

Darren Edwards (born 28 July 1990) is a British disabled adventurer, inspirational speaker, and author.

Edwards is a former mountaineer and soldier who suffered a life-changing spinal cord injury (SCI) in August 2016, when he was involved in a near-fatal climbing accident in North Wales. Surviving a devastating, life-changing climbing accident that very nearly claimed his life, and could so easily have destroyed his spirit, he instead used it as a catalyst for growth. Now, he is a disabled adventurer who has redefined the limits of what is thought possible for an individual with a spinal cord injury.[1][2]

Early life[edit]

Darren Edwards was born in East London on 28 July 1990 to parents Julie and Ray Edwards. When Darren was 11 years old, his family moved to Shrewsbury, Shropshire, where he discovered a love for adventure and the outdoors. Edwards learned to climb while a student at Shrewsbury Sixth Form College.

In 2012, Edwards graduated from the University of Westminster with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Modern History.  He showed sporting prowess, captaining the Westminister Men's Football team between 2010 and 2012.[3]

Military service[edit]

Edwards joined the Army Reserve as a soldier in 2012. His hometown unit was E Company 8 Rifles housed at Copthorne Barracks in Shrewsbury. Edwards opted for the Special Air Service Reserve (SASR). He successfully passed the physical selection process and underwent continuation training until he suffered a spinal cord injury in a near-fatal climbing accident in 2016.[1]

Disabled adventurer and expedition leader[edit]

Since sustaining his life-changing injury, Edwards has successfully completed a series of high-profile expeditions that have redefined what many thought possible for an individual with a disability.

Kayak 4 Heroes, 2021[edit]

In July 2021, Edwards led a team of five injured/wounded veterans in the world-first challenge of kayaking from Land's End to John O’ Groats – 1,400 kilometres along the length of Great Britain's coastline. The expedition took Edwards and his team 26 days to complete, and they raised £100,000 for a military charity.[4][5][6][7]

English Channel Row, 2022[edit]

In May 2022, Edwards led a mixed team of disabled/able-bodied rowers in crossing the busiest shipping lane in the world – the English Channel. The 23-mile crossing took him and his team more than six hours to complete, and they had to successfully navigate through a steady stream of large seaborn vessels and rolling waves.[8]

World Marathon Challenge, 2023[edit]

In February 2023, Edwards became the first person with a disability to complete the World Marathon Challenge. Over the course of seven days, he successfully ran seven marathons across seven continents and became the first person with a disability to complete the challenge. In the process, Edwards raised more than £80,000 for a military charity.[9][10][11]

Vatnajokull Icecap crossing, 2023[edit]

In April 2023 Edwards was part of a three-person team that became the first all-disabled team to cross Western Europe's largest icecap – the Vatnajokull in Iceland. Over the course of 11 days, the team of three individuals with spinal cord injuries travelled more than 130km by sit-ski.[12][13]

Inspirational speaker[edit]

Edwards is an established motivational speaker and has delivered talks to organisations across the globe. He specialises in speaking on the topics of resilience, mental toughness, and teamwork. Edward's speaking engagements draw upon his lived experiences of overcoming adversity and a life-changing injury, as well as the expeditions he has completed as part of a team.[2][14]

Author[edit]

Edwards is the author of Strength through adversity, released in February 2023 on Amazon in the United Kingdom and many countries overseas.[15]

References[edit]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Robertson, Dominic (2018-02-12). "Road to recovery: Inspirational story of paralysed Shrewsbury climber". www.shropshirestar.com. Retrieved 2023-12-23.
  2. 2.0 2.1 "Darren Edwards – Disabled Adventurer & Inspirational Speaker". Scampspeakers. Retrieved 2023-12-23.
  3. Packer, Phil (2021-12-21). "Disabled Adventurer and Explorer, Darren Edwards, joins the BRIT Ambassador family". BRIT. Retrieved 2023-12-23.
  4. "Home". Kayak 4 Heroes. Retrieved 2023-12-23.
  5. "Five veterans with life-changing injuries attempt a world-first kayak journey of 1,400km". www.britishcanoeing.org.uk. Retrieved 2023-12-23.
  6. "Kayak 4 heroes". Welcome to the Paddler magazine. 2021-05-25. Retrieved 2023-12-23.
  7. Humphreys, Nick (2020-06-06). "Inspirational Darren to lead ex-servicemen on kayaking challenge". www.shropshirestar.com. Retrieved 2023-12-23.
  8. "Channel rowers set off from Dover in aid of mental health charities". InYourArea.co.uk. 2022-05-23. Retrieved 2023-12-23.
  9. Parke, Callum (2023-02-09). "Athlete becomes first person in wheelchair to complete marathon challenge". The Independent. Retrieved 2023-12-23.
  10. "British Athlete Becomes First Handcyclist to Complete World Marathon Challenge". Runner's World. 2023-02-11. Retrieved 2023-12-23.
  11. "Disabled Shropshire man completes seven-day marathon feat". BBC News. 2023-02-07. Retrieved 2023-12-23.
  12. "Vatnajokull Icecap Challenge : M2M Foundation". www.millimetres2mountains.org. Retrieved 2023-12-23.
  13. "Ed Jackson and his team to cross Vatnajokull Glacier". BBC News. 2023-03-26. Retrieved 2023-12-23.
  14. Limited, Mix Diversity Developers. "Darren Edwards – Mix Diversity". www.mixdiversitydevelopers.co.uk. Retrieved 2023-12-23.
  15. "Mr Darren Edwards: books, biography, latest update". Amazon.com. Retrieved 2023-12-23.






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