Terminal cancer patient Ian Toothill relives Everest conquest

Ian Toothill reached the top of the North Col route on Mount Everest on 16 May Image copyright Ian Toothill
Image caption Ian Toothill was told he had beaten bowel cancer - only for the disease to strike again

A terminal cancer patient who conquered Everest has relived the moment he reached the summit of Earth's highest mountain.

Ian Toothill, who is raising money for cancer charity Macmillan, believes he is the first cancer patient to scale it.

He suffered snow-blindness - a temporary loss of vision - on the way down.

The 47-year-old, who reached the summit on Monday, is now back in England.

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"I was able to spend maybe two to three minutes on my own, taking it in and thought about my mum who passed away three years ago," he said.

"Even when I got to the summit I could only see maybe 40m (130ft), but I still had a great time. I got the full Everest experience.

'Couldn't hang around'

"I thought about all the challenges to even get on the mountain. There were a lot of people who thought someone with cancer shouldn't be there so I had a responsibility to get down in one piece.

"I knew there was another storm coming in so even at the top it was in the back of my mind I knew I couldn't hang around too much."

Image copyright Peter Whitfield
Image caption Sheffield Wednesday supporter Mr Toothill planted a flag belonging to rivals Sheffield United after a friend donated £1,000 to the appeal

Mr Toothill, who is originally from Sheffield and is now living in Willesden Green, London, said he has been told he only has a few months to live as he battles bowel cancer.

The personal trainer told BBC Sheffield he was turned down by 1,700 insurance companies as he planned his climb.

Having made it to the mountain, his efforts were severely hampered by storms.

"My tent was destroyed at camp two and I lost almost everything. We had to go back down and recoup and borrow stuff," he said.

"But I was never in doubt I wanted another go at it so wanted to go back up."

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