Dragon Duncan nears Mt Kilimanjaro summit

Dragons’ Den star Duncan Bannatyne is nearing the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro to raise funds for a military charity.

The businessman and a team of 20 are on the final leg of their expedition in Tanzania on behalf of amputee charity Pilgrim Bandits.

The team, which includes several amputees, started the climb on Friday and will set off on the final leg of their hike at midnight local time today.

Duncan, 62, who has an OBE for his charity work, prepared for the challenge by spending hours in an altitude chamber.

Speaking from a camp on the mountain, he said: “I am very thankful for the hours I spent in the altitude chamber. This is one of the hardest things I have ever done, but real courage is being shown by the guys who have lost limbs defending our country.

“It is inspirational to be part of this team and I cannot wait to reach the summit. Wish us luck for the final push.”

Duncan, born in Clydebank near Glasgow, has business interests in health clubs, hotels, media, TV, stage schools, property and transport.

He supports many charities and is involved with Comic Relief and Unicef. He is also a passionate anti-smoking campaigner.