Warm clothes are top of Maddie Wilson’s Christmas present list this year as in March she is off to Lapland to raise funds for Hannah’s Willberry Wonder Pony Charity.

The 24-year-old rider from Wales is sledging 250km from Norway into Sweden pulled along by a team of husky dogs.

She is covering all the costs of the trip, organised by Global Adventure Challenges, ensuring all the money raised goes straight to the charity founded by Hannah Francis.

Eventberry, the cuddly toy pony that has accompanied Maddie round all her cross-country outings this year, will be going with her to the Arctic.

Miss Wilson competes at BE90 and BE100 levels on her 17.2hh Irish sport horse, Hector.

Fundraising began in the summer with buckets rattled at BE events and a quiz night in her parent’s barn, which raised £800.

So far £3,000 has been raised for the charity, but Miss Wilson hopes to increase this to £4,000 by the time she sets off on 31 March.

To donate visit: www.justgiving.com/m-wilson13

Miss Wilson followed Hannah Francis’s heroic story reading all her blogs.

“She was a real inspiration. I want to raise as much money for the charity as I can,” she told H&H.

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The six-day charity challenge begins in the Arctic city of Tromso where the 10 people taking part will first meet their husky companions.

“I’ve wanted to do this for years,” said the former Harper Adams student, now on placement with a food company in Lincolnshire.

After two hours of training with the dogs, the sledgers set off armed with all their food, tent and provisions and the all-important guide.

Participants are required to erect their own tents, cook for themselves and look after their team of huskies in sub zero temperatures.

“Most people I asked to join me said I’m not paying to be cold,” jokes Miss Wilson, “but I am looking forward to seeing the Northern Lights.”

The challenge finishes on 8 April at the famous Ice Hotel in Jukkasjarvi so the new thermals will still be in use.

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