We spoke to Club Photographer Paul Scott ahead of him embarking on the challenge of a lifetime in the new year. Paul and fellow Spartans fan Gary Richardson will be climbing Mt Kilamanjaro for charity, RMHC.
How long have you supported Blyth?
I’ve been coming to Croft Park on and off since I was a kid, but it was in 2016 I became hooked. I brought my then seven-year-old daughter along for the first time and she loved it. It helped that it was the promotion winning season. That season she managed to see them play 21 games winning 20 of them, drawing one, win the senior cup and the league to gain promotion!
How did you end up as part of the Media Team?
I first picked up a camera in preseason 2021 and continued to bring it to games in the early part of the season. On New Year’s Day 2022 I was approached by Stephen the media manager and asked if I would like to come onboard.
What roles do you have within the media team?
My main role is a club photographer both on a match day and covering player signings. I’ve also tried my hand a designing graphics and occasionally I’m put in charge of social media on a match day. This is not a responsibility I’m very good at as I am still a fan at heart, and tend to get carried away in the moment. Like earlier this season I forgot to Tweet the final score in our last min win at Buxton until about 15 mins after the final whistle!
Do you have a favourite picture you have taken so far?
I have a couple I really like – one being the trophy lift at St James Park last season. That whole experience was great to be involved in. Another is Robbie Dale celebrating assisting the equalizer away to Gloucester with his last kick for Blyth. But if I have to pick a favourite it would be this one of Lewis McNall celebrating straight my camera in the FA Cup this season.
To the main reason we are here today. You are soon to be heading off to take the challenge of a lifetime!
Yeah, on New Year’s Day I will fly out to Tanzania to climb Mount Kilimanjaro. I will head out there with another Spartans fan Gary Richardson. We will start or assent on the 3rd January and will aim to reach the summit on the morning of January 8th In total we will be on Mt Kilimanjaro for seven days.
Kilimanjaro is the highest point on the African continent and one of the “Seven Summits” ( highest points on each continent) It stands over 19000ft tall and is over six times the hight of the highest mountain in England. When we start climbing we will be climbing through 30 degree heat in a jungle, but then at the summit it can be as cold as -18 and deep snow!
Gary and I have taken on quite a few challenges in the country including Walking 93 miles from coast to coast along Hadrian’s Wall in three days, and the National three peaks. We are both 40 next year and wanted to do something big. It’s also an opportunity to raise some funds for a great charity in RMHC
Tell us about RMHC.
Having a child in hospital is unimaginable for families. At Ronald McDonald House Charities UK, they ease some of the burden by providing free ‘home away from home’ accommodation. The best medical care for your child isn’t
always close to home, and families often find themselves travelling long
distances to be with their child in hospital. They have 14 Houses across
the UK that give families a warm and comfortable place to rest, eat and
relax, just moments away from their child’s hospital ward. Their support
is invaluable to families at a critical time in their lives. In a typical year
RMHC will support around 6,000 families.
I have fundraised for RMHC for the last eight years through taking
on various challenges and I’ve been lucky enough to visit one the houses
and attend events. Doing this meant I got to see the amazing work they
do and hear first-hand from the families they have impacted. One of
these families is that of our very own JJ O’Donnell, when his nephew was
born 14 weeks premature.
Everyone at the club wishes you all the best Paul! Keep an eye out on
our social media in the new year for updates during his trek.
If anyone would like to support this great cause they can do by visiting
his Just Giving page here.