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Last Updated: Monday, 8 November 2004, 10:19 GMT
Search for peak climb forecaster
Nick Chetwood and Pete Collins
Pete Collins, right, with outgoing weather watcher Nick Chetwood
Interviews are being held for a job which has been dubbed "one of the most bizarre" in England.

Lake District National Park Authority felltop assessors climb Helvellyn daily during the winter to check conditions at 3,114ft (nearly 950m).

The information is used for a weather service used by 200,000 people a year, and the authority describes it as a "vitally important" job.

The search is now on for someone to fill one of the two assessors' roles.

The assessors work on a week-on, week-off basis between December and April, including Christmas Day.

They record details of wind speed, temperature, snow and ice on Helvellyn's summit and the information is then fed to telephone information service Weatherline.

I think if you love being in the mountains and enjoy being on them in bad weather, it's an ideal job
Felltop assessor Pete Collins

Pete Collins, 36, is about to start his third season as one of the felltop assessors. A mountaineer of about 25 years' experience, he also works as a freelance outdoor pursuits instructor and is a member of Patterdale Mountain Rescue team.

He said: "I love being out in the hills and mountains. I believe in the service and its role in improving safety in the mountains.

"I think if you love being in the mountains and enjoy being on them in bad weather, it's an ideal job."

Mr Collins' record for the ascent is 57 minutes, but it normally takes him between 70 and 90 minutes. The usual time is between two and three hours.

The closing date for applications for the job was Friday and there were 50 applications. Interviews are being held on 19 November.

Forecasters to climb mountain
30 Nov 03 |  Cumbria
Fell walkers urged to take care
03 Nov 03 |  Cumbria

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