A VOLUNTEER with Kidderminster community group The Pickup Artists took her litter-picking passion to new heights by bagging up rubbish on her descent from Mount Kilimanjaro.

Wendy Garrett took part in a sponsored hike to Africa's highest summit with Liberty Living colleague Neil Davies to raise money for the British Heart Foundation.

The charity was selected by Liberty Living in memory of Neil’s family member who tragically died from a heart attack, aged 39, and a maintenance technician at the company who also lost his life last year.

The pair successfully raised £2,951.76 for the charity - far exceeding their £1,000 target.

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It took them four and a half days to reach the top, and as if climbing a mountain wasn't enough, Wendy started an impromptu litter-pick on the way back down.

Wendy, who lives in Kidderminster, said: "I volunteer with The Pickup Artists so wherever I go I try to do my bit, so why not make it international?

"The litter was terrible in some areas - there were sweet wrappers all over the place.

"It started with me picking up litter and everyone in our group joined in.

"We managed to clear a three-mile stretch of the route and hopefully it brought some attention to the issue of littering while also giving something back to the community."

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She added: "I've climbed the highest peaks in the UK but you can't compare to Kilimanjaro.

"The altitude makes you feel physically sick - it's exhausting. It was definitely a new experience."

Rosh Teeluck, head of events at the British Heart Foundation, said: “Without the dedication of people like Wendy and Neil, we wouldn’t be able to fund life-saving research that will end the devastation caused by heart and circulatory disease once and for all. But there’s still so much more to do and we urgently need people’s continued support to help us improve treatments further and keep more families together.

“Your fundraising helps our researchers make more discoveries and keep more hearts beating.”