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Ben Moon making climbing Hubble, his masterpiece at Raven Tor, England first ascended in 1990
Photo by Steve Lewis
British climber Jerry Moffatt
Photo by Chris Gore

The Birth of British Sport Climbing in Statement of Youth

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The film Statement of Youth / The Birth of British Sport Climbing directed by Nick Brown featuring Jerry Moffatt, Ben Moon, Chris Gore, Andy Pollitt, Martin Atkinson, Mark Pretty, Craig Smith, Steve Lewis, Mark Leach, Ed Douglas.

At the start of the 80’s sport climbing was in its embryonic stages. Bolted routes were beginning to make a regular appearance, indoor climbing walls as we know them nowadays had not yet been invented and there was no such thing as being a pro athlete.

During that period standards rose exponentially, from 7b+ as the cutting edge to 9a becoming the new world standard at the end of the ’80’s. In such a short period the sport changed beyond recognition and, in Britain, was fuelled by a small group of climbers who would do anything to climb full-time: sleeping in sheds underneath crags, shoplifting for food and clothes, and living off unemployment benefits.

As illustrated in this film directed by Nick Brown, these climbers were living outside the rest of society and went on to become the most influential figures in the history of British sport climbing.



Featuring Jerry Moffatt, Ben Moon, Chris Gore, Andy Pollitt, Martin Atkinson, Mark Pretty, Craig Smith, Steve Lewis, Mark Leach, Ed Douglas.

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