Opticians climb Snowdon to remember wife of Biggleswade store director

PUBLISHED: 12:01 12 August 2018

Specsavers staff from across the UK hiked up Mount Snowdon in memory of Priya Mistry. Picture: Paul Bloomfield

Specsavers staff from across the UK hiked up Mount Snowdon in memory of Priya Mistry. Picture: Paul Bloomfield

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The wife of a Biggleswade store director has been remembered with a charity hike up Snowdon after she tragically died from a rare heart condition.

Specsavers staff from across the UK hiked up Mount Snowdon in memory of Priya Mistry. Picture: Paul BloomfieldSpecsavers staff from across the UK hiked up Mount Snowdon in memory of Priya Mistry. Picture: Paul Bloomfield

Alpesh Mistry – who manages the town’s Specsavers Opticians – lost his wife Priya when she suffered heart failure, caused by pulmonary hypertension, aged just 32.

Specsavers staff from across the UK – including Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire and Cambridgeshire – climbed the highest mountain outside the Scottish Highlands, and raised £530 as part of fundraising efforts for the Pulmonary Hypertension Association UK.

Alpesh said: “It was such an amazing gesture from them – one that means a lot to me.

“It’s not an easy hike to undertake, and the fact they did it in memory of Priya and managed to raise such a great amount of money at the same time is truly lovely.”

Specsavers staff from across the UK hiked up Mount Snowdon in memory of Priya Mistry. Picture: Paul BloomfieldSpecsavers staff from across the UK hiked up Mount Snowdon in memory of Priya Mistry. Picture: Paul Bloomfield

Snowdon towers at 1,085m above sea level, and the hiking group of nine set off at 7.15am before returning eight hours later.

Henry Churchill, from the opticians’ Cambridge store, was delighted to support Alpesh.

“It was a gruelling walk,” he said.

“There was lots of wind and steep inclines, but we had great company and it was all for an incredibly worthy cause.

“We’re happy to have helped make a difference in some small way.

“Alpesh is an incredibly valued colleague and friend and we wanted to support him.”

Pulmonary hypertension is a type of high blood pressure which affects the arteries in the lungs and right side of the heart.

This can lead to a breathlessness, progressive damage to the affected organs and heart failure.

Between April 2016 and March 2017, the Pulmonary Hypertension Association helped treat more than 7000 patients.

There is no cure for pulmonary hypertension, with life expectancy often reduced to six or seven years.

The charity offers drug therapy to improve the quality of life for those with the disease.

Despite positive steps being made, it is unknown how many cases go undiagnosed in the UK.

To find out more or donate to the Pulmonary Hypertension Association UK, have a look at phauk.org.

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