A VETERAN from Urmston braved freezing temperatures and hostile terrain to boost SSAFA, the Armed forces charity.

Thirty-three-year-old Chris O’Connell, completed a five day trek across Iceland to raise money and awareness for the charity.

Chris served in the Infantry Regiment in the Army for eight years before training to become an engineer for Openreach - Britain’s digital network business.

He has always had a passion for adventure and climbing mountains, so he jumped at the chance to trek 70 miles across Iceland’s difficult terrain and glaciers.

The trek was extremely challenging and demanding, and Chris and his team were forced to sleep on glaciers and battle the high altitudes.

Having served himself, Chris witnessed first-hand the work SSAFA does to support military personal and their families who are in need, when a number of his friends turned to the charity for help.

Chris raised an impressive £4,030 for SSAFA through arranging charity sports days, football matches and coaching sessions.

Chris said: “When Openreach announced the opportunity to take part in a trek across Iceland to raise money for SSAFA, I was over the moon and signed up straight away.

"I love taking part in experiences and challenges like this, and the fact it was set up to raise awareness and funds for such a worthwhile charity, meant a lot to me.

"Whilst I never needed SSAFA’s help, I know many people who did, and it felt important to me to give something back. The trek was an incredible experience and I am now heading up a trek in Nepal next year.”