'Disabled people have to climb a mountain every day' - the Arena survivor's epic challenge

Video report of Martin Hibbert and Stuart Wildman talking to Gamal Fahnbulleh

“I want to turn an appalling act of terror into a force for greater good.”

That is what drives Martin Hibbert who was paralysed in the Manchester Arena Terror attack that devastated so many lives.

Twenty two people died when a suicide bomber detonated his device at the end of the Ariana Grande concert in May 2017.

Martin Hibbert and his daughter Eve, who was 14 at the time of the attack in May 2017

Martin and his daughter Eve suffered life changing injuries in the bombing but the football agent has been determined to live life to the full and to show what can be achieved if those with spinal chord injuries get the right support.

He has set himself an epic mission to climb to the top of Africa’s highest peak, Mount Kilimanjaro on a specially adapted bike.

He's also set out a target of raising a million pounds for the Spinal Injuries Association.

Martin credits his recovery to support from the association and the dedicated care he received at Salford Royal Hospital and staff in their specialist trauma unit.

Martin will be joined on the expedition by Stuart Wildman, who cared for him from the very beginning as he set out to rebuild his life.

Martin Hibbert and trauma nurse Stuart Wildman who are taking on the Kilimanjaro challenge together

The  Consultant Nurse in Major Trauma had become one of his great friends and will be by Martin's side as he attempts to scale the 19, 308ft to get the top of Mount Kilimanjaro.

Martin is using the climb to send a message of optimism and inclusivity for life after injury.

Over 50, 000 people across the UK will face a life of paralysis as a result of spinal cord damage.

Only one in three people with a spinal cord injury go to a specialist unit, which drastically limits their chances of living a fulfilled life.

During the Covid-19 pandemic over a 100 beds normally used by patients with spinal cord injuries have been closed.

Martin is now a Patron of the Spinal Injuries Association and says without their support he 'wouldn't be here today.'

Martin lost his mum Janice in November 2021 and plans to take her ashes with him as he attempts the epic climb.

Martin's mum Janice Hibbert - he plans to take her ashes to the Kilimanjaro summit

ITV Granada Reports has followed Martin's emotional journey from the very beginning in the terrible days after the attack.

Video of Martin's incredible journey so far:

You can find out more about Martin's Mountain challenge here