© Tim Glasby
Lucy is without doubt the best female climber in Britain; her list of climbing achievements is both comprehensive and impressive. She is a truly accomplished all rounder who excels in a number of different climbing disciplines, be it trad, sport, winter or competition climbing.
Lucy hails from the South West; born in Taunton she moved to Bristol at the age of 12 and was based there until the turn of the millennium when she moved up to Sheffield.
Lucy started climbing while at college and immediately took to it. Operating out of Bristol meant that the stunning sea cliffs of Pembroke became the obvious focus during the early years. Lucy’s ascendance through the grades was rapid and soon enough she was ticking off onsights of classic E5s such as Get Some In on St Govans, before moving on to onsight even fiercer routes such as Boss Hogg E6 6c on Trevallen. Despite having travelled the world in pursuit of the best routes, Pembroke remains her favourite crag.
Bigger, alpine style routes have always appealed to Lucy and in 2000 she climbed the Hasse Brandler ED on Cima Grande in the Dolomites with Airlie Anderson. The following year a trip to Greenland yielded the first ascent of Venus Envy, a 600m E4/5 on The Baroness. Modern mixed climbing caught her eye too and in 2002 she made the first ascent of Mighty Aphrodite M9x at Ouray in Colorado.
Lucy has excelled in the competition arena; from the late nineties and right through until 2007 she dominated, taking seven British Leading Championship titles and one British Bouldering Champion title. The very same onsighting skills and fitness have seen her make several F8a onsights including Monocroma at Raco de Misa in Spain. She is also no slouch when it comes to redpointing, as witnessed by her ascent of Kaleo Borroka F8b+ at Siurana in 2009.
Recently Lucy has also become something of a media star following her role as professional climber in the award winning Climbing Great Buildings series shown on BBC2.
Lucy is a climbing coach and runs regular technique courses, mostly in the Peak, but also around the country. Her website has an interesting feature called the Climbing Clinic where she answers queries about how to improve your climbing standard.
One ascent that sticks out is my onsight of Coronary Country E6 6b at Sharpnose in Cornwall. The crux felt very hard and I was completely in extremis just trying anything to stay on the rock and move upwards. I remember a moment where I thought I was peeling off so I just threw my right foot out on some tiny nubbin and somehow it stayed and gave me a few milliseconds of breathing space to plan my next desperate move. I was amazed and very pleased that I managed to get through this, it felt like I did a lot of climbing in a very short section. It seemed like I had to do some very intricate things on pants holds just to gain a fraction of height. It was a fantastic feeling to top out on the fin; it was a route that I had wanted to do for a long time.