A kind-hearted crew from New Cumnock are set to scale Ben Nevis this month in a bid to raise vital funds for Crohn’s & Colitis UK after seeing a close friend and family member battle with the condition for eight years.

Lee Ferguson, his friends and cousins, Ian Ferguson, Shaun Ferguson, Connor Fleming, Joe Mackie, David Hamilton, Derrick Wallace, Scott Maghee, Billy Bryden and Bobby Ferguson want to raise awareness for the bowel disease as they have witnessed first-hand the gruelling effects it has had on Lee’s cousin, Lynn.

Lynn was diagnosed with Crohn’s and Colitis in November 2013 and says living with the condition is “pretty much a nightmare” which has impacted her mental and physical health hugely.

The 39-year-old hopes that the boys’ Ben Nevis feat will raise enough money to fund research into the disease and better people’s understanding of the signs, symptoms and reality of living with it.

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Lynn told the Chronicle: “We’ve got sponsor sheets, raffle tickets and prizes to give away as part of the event.

“We’re trying to make folk aware of Crohn’s and Colitis. You don’t hear about it often enough, people don’t talk about it even.

“Since I was diagnosed I’ve been constantly in and out of hospital. I’ve been on different treatments, even chemotherapy treatments, but nothing has worked. I’m at the point now where I’ve got an appointment to have my bowel removed. I need to do something.

“My son is 19 and has been going through it since November 2013, too. It’s pretty much a nightmare and has a huge effect on your mental health.

“I’m in pain, I can’t sleep, I have constant mood swings and the treatments have side effects, too. I have osteoarthritis now because of all the steroids I’ve been on. Some days I just don’t want to go out the house.”

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She added: “I’m super duper proud of the group.

“They have made me so happy. My mum and dad have also been amazing. I don’t know what I would do without them both.”

Lee said: “Lynn would do anything for anyone. If you need a lift anywhere, she’d be the first to do it despite how she’s feeling. She’ll put a smile on her face and a week later you’d find out she was ill that day. Hopefully after the operation she’ll be back to living life again.”

The climb will take place on June 19.

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