Cumbrian Derek Eland mounts Everest artist plan

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Media captionDerek Eland has spent time in Afghanistan and is now planning a stay at Everest

A Cumbrian is swapping battlefields for Base Camp as he plans to be Mount Everest's artist-in-residence.

Derek Eland will spend the next climbing season documenting the people trying to reach the world's highest peak.

Mr Eland, from Carlisle, previously spent time with British forces in Afghanistan as a war artist.

He said he wanted to explore what it was like to "be human in a different and difficult place".

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Image caption Mr Eland will spend six weeks at Base Camp

Mr Eland will fly to Nepal on 1 April next year and will spend about six weeks on the mountain.

He told BBC Cumbria: "I've always had an incredibly strong love of the mountains - I am a Cumbrian - and I know Cumbria's climbing links to Everest and Nepal are incredibly strong.

"It's the combination of those loves that led me to think Everest Base Camp is an exciting place. It's been explored by climbers but perhaps not by an artist.

"My plan to is stay at Base Camp until everyone is off the mountain."

Mr Eland said next year would be an important one for Everest after the earthquakes which killed at least 19 people on Everest and thousands in Nepal in April.

He said: "This year is the first year in 30 years that no-one climbed Everest, so next year will be a big year."

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