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There are only a couple of days to go until Christmas (as if you needed reminding!) and the Herb Team at the Castle Garden has been working hard producing some lovely herbal gifts and stocking fillers, made from herbs grown in the Castle Garden this year!

The hard training this autumn term has paid off with not one, not two, but THREE squad members selected to compete on the British Team next year. Selection took place on the 7th and 8th of December at the Open Youth Events in Sheffield. As this was selection for next year's team, some competitors were moved up an age category.Eugenie Lee and Jim Pope were selected for the Junior British Bouldering Team and Cameron McLoughlin and Jim were selected for the Junior British Climbing Team.

The Castle are very pleased to present our newest Castle Associate - Mountain Magic Founded by former Castle instructor Paul Boggis, Mountain Magic offer hillwalking, mountaineering and climbing courses in the Lake District, North Wales and Scottish Highlands. We have a rigorous vetting procedure for all of our Castle Associates and we are confident that you'll be delighted with your Mountain Magic experience. More importantly, we know that you'll be in safe hands.

Dear climbers,

I hope that you’ve been enjoying the new facilities that we’ve developed this year: the New Lead Area, Comp Wall, Outside Boulders and, of course, the long-awaited Loft Wall and Loft Boulder.  I know that I’ve been enjoying it! We’ve also built a Roundhouse in the Garden and developed our new website.  I’ve had so many people come and tell me how great they think the new areas are and how proud to be part of the Castle because of its atmosphere and its values. That encouragement means a lot to me- thank you.

Tim Emmett, one of the most psyched climbers of all time, was recently at The Castle Climbing Centre on behalf of Mountain Hardwear delivering drytooling masterclasses in The Quarry and later giving his talk 'The Perfect Storm'. Tim has waived his fees so that we can donate profits to the Breathtakers OB Trust charity.

The concept of bouldering circuits comes from the world famous sandstone bouldering area Fontainebleau just South of Paris, France.The first painted circuit (small colored arrows and numbers are painted onto the rock to signify each bloc) was created in 1947 by Fred Bernick in the Cuvier Rempart area, followed by routes at Les Gorges d'Apremont painted by Pierre Mercier in 1952. The standardization of route color by difficulty (Yellow = PD, Orange = AD, Blue = D, Red = TD, Black = ED, White = ED+) dates back to the 1980s.

In the run up to the Castle’s Arctic themed Christmas party being held on Saturday 14th December, we’re holding a raffle, with some great prizes on offer to the lucky winners.

So what’s the reason behind the Arctic theme and what is the raffle raising money for, you may ask?

Kids Company is on a mission to provide 4,500 Christmas gifts for the children and young people they support to make their Christmas a happy occasion. Many of these children would otherwise be alone or without food and presents if not for Kids Company. The festive season, far from being happy, for them is a sad time of shame, loneliness and hunger.

Reaching New Heights

Climb Catalunya’s new trip: Nov 30th to 7th Dec 2013

Want to take your climbing to a new level and treat yourself to some winter sun? This trip offers motivated climbers just that opportunity. Aimed at people who feel happy trying to lead 6a or 6b or above (European sports grades) this trip will offer you all the right conditions to push your grade on some of Catalunya's finest rock lines.

The BMC Leading Ladder is a fun lead climbing competition running at 28 UK walls from 2 November 2013 to 23 February 2014. Each participating wall will set ten BMC Leading Ladder routes ranging from F5+ to 8a.  You will have two weeks in which to climb these routes. At the end of the series there will be a Grand Final on 22 March 2014.  To be considered for the final you must compete in at least two rounds.

Taking Part
There will be four age/gender categories:  Female / Male under 16 and Female / Male 16+

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