Thank you for wanting to join the Fan Dance Challenge

6th April 2019 in aid of Help Bristol’s Homeless




This challenge is part of the Star Fish Challenge - Making a difference one starfish at a time, which aims to complete 20 endurance challenges in 2019 each to provide funding and support for a challenge that is really making a difference.


About the charity

Help Bristol’s Homeless CIC is a non-profit, social enterprise with a mission to change the face of homelessness in Bristol.

Unlike many homeless charities, our ethos is that housing must come first, and then everything else comes after. Many complex factors can lead to homelessness, and while it is true that these issues need to be resolved to keep people off the street, we believe that the priority must be to get people into safe, stable and comfortable accommodation. From there, we can help them to improve their own lives and reach their potential.

Free clothing and food can help people to survive homelessness, but it does not provide a way out. Programmes aimed at resolving complex issues such as addiction are vital, but do not solve the day-to-day problems of being homeless. We do not believe a person suffering from homelessness can make the most of these programmes, or reach their own potential, when they face a daily task of finding a safe place to stay. We believe that the best way to help homeless people is to give them a secure base from which they can build their lives.

We work with the support of our directors, staff and volunteers to build temporary accommodation, to be used by residents while they access the help they need to secure a permanent home. By providing users with the security and dignity that everyone deserves, we empower them to take an active role in improving their own situation. Our mission is to get homeless people off the street first, and then give them a helping hand in the right direction.


About the Fan Dance Challenge

You will be guided on this route by serving or former serving Military Physical Training Instructors who themselves have trained our countries best soldiers on these very hills!

Pen y Fan is the highest peak in south Wales, situated in the Brecon Beacons National Park. At 886 metres  (2,907 ft)above sea-level, it is also the highest British peak south of Cadair Idris in Snowdonia. The twin summits of Pen y Fan and Corn Du at 873 m (2,864 ft) were formerly referred to as Cadair Arthur or 'Arthur's Seat.

This is an iconic route that is best known for its part of the British Army’s Special Forces (SAS/SBS) selection process covering 24km.

The route

We will set off from the famous red telephone box and make our way up the roman road to summit Pen Y Fan. Then descending 'Jacob's Ladder' past windy gap and continuing along an undulating small vehicle track  to our main water stop and turnaround point. We then take the route in reverse, ascending Jacob's ladder to the top of the Fan before starting our descend back to the  start point and in time for a well deserved brew and hot Roll! 

Option 1

We will walk the route at a reasonable pace which will suit most reasonably fit individuals. Don’t worry if you are a bit slower, you will be supported. Because the terrain is difficult there will be a cut off of 3 hours to be at the turn around point, so if it is a bit too much we can arrange lift back to the start and you can join everyone for your hot roll and tea.

Option 2

Not for the faint-hearted, this team will aim to complete within the 4 hours (time given on most selection courses) . There is not weight requirement beyond your necessary kit but if you want a really authentic experience we can advise you on the additional weight that is part of the selection process.

Please specify whe booking if you wish to choose option 1 (5:30 hrs) or option 2 (4hrs).

The cost of registration £39.00 per person which is non refundable. Thank you to Sean and Forces Fitness for keeing the cost of registration to an absolute minimum     -  We would like to you rasie £175 per person that will go to Directly to Help Bristol's Homeless CLICK HERE  for the link to the just giving Page .


We would like to raise a minimum of £175pp that will go directly to Help Bristol’s Homeless to convert metal containers to provide a safe, warm and comfortable place to live as an alternative to living on the streets. Quite apart from the hardship of street homeless, but not having a safe place to live many people are denied the support services they need to get well. They also face abuse and attacks.

It takes £15,000 to convert a metal container to a really comfortable micro apartment for a person in need.

We are aiming together to raise £30,000 to ensure two people in Bristol will get their own front door and the support they need.  JUST GIVING PAGE LINK

The route

8.30 am Meet at the car park opposite Storey Arms, LD3 8NL

8.45 am–   Intro and Safety Brief 

9:00 –  Start Walk

Summit Pen Y Fan 

Hit our Turn around point  (Cut off time 12.00 noon)

Summit Pen Y Fan via Jacobs Ladder

Return to Storey Arms Car park

Roll and Cup of Warm Tea or coffee Cut off time 3.00pm

 There is no official weight to carry on this challenge although you will need to carry the kit list as outlined in the joining instructions as a minimum.

The Fan Dance  AKA "Exercise High Walk", more commonly known as the Fan Dance, is part of the Fitness and Navigation phase of the selection process for the United Kingdom's Special Forces, as well as 16 Air Assault Brigade's Pathfinder Platoon. In the past it was used as a test on P Company during the Brecon Beacons Steel Bayonet phase and is still used as part of the Platoon Sergeant's Senior's Course at the Infantry Battle School, Brecon, Wales. The Fan Dance is a 24km load bearing march that typically takes place at the end of the first week of the selection course. It is used as the first major indicator of whether a candidate has the physical and mental aptitude to complete the selection course.

Fan Dance Challenge in partnership with Forces Fitness Empower Support for the Voluntary Sector and Starfish Challenge – Making a Difference, one starfish at a time.





How to join email :  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


We will need your name, address, contact details, which option you require and any dietary requirements you have.


Once registered we will guide you to your own fundraising page and you can get cracking

Spaces on this challenge are limited and fundraising is an essential part of this challenge.

Help Bristol’s Homeless receive the funding as its raised so we could get at least one person into their own home for Christmas

Thank you for supporting this challenge




The Star Bunkhouse is an independent hostel in Bwlch offering 10% discount to any participant who needs accommodation the night before the event (Friday 5 April 2019). Participants can contact us via Please mention the challenge when enquiring

Bev Garside

Starfish Challenge