A CLIMBING centre boasting the tallest outdoor climbing wall in the UK has launched its own climbing-focused charity.

ROKT Climbing Centre, in Brighouse, has started the ROKT Foundation and has already secured funding to boost the number of women taking part in the sport.

The charity will use climbing, alongside nutrition sessions and other activities to boost people’s mental health and tackle societal issues like obesity.

It has been launched with less than a year to go until the Tokyo Olympics, which will see climbing featured for the first time.

ROKT believes climbing is one of the best ways to get fit quick and can improve people's mental wellbeing, but some barriers remain such as cost, a lack of confidence and myths surrounding having to climb at height.

It will work with a number of charities from across the county to break down barriers to accessing climbing for people of all ages, change how people think about exercise and fitness and improve people's mental health.

Kate Kinsella, director of community at ROKT Foundation, said: “ROKT has an amazing facility and experienced staff that provide brilliant fun activities and attracts thousands through our doors each year from individuals to groups to schools.

"We now want to harness this momentum - with climbing making its Olympic debut in 2020 - to create opportunities for people who would not normally engage with us, climbing or any form of healthy activity.

“The Foundation is ambitious and we’ve already secured funding for our first project, which is a women’s climbing development programme to support those with busy lifestyles to either start or return to climbing.

“We will be working with partners to provide the space at ROKT for things like creative and drama therapy sessions too, which can be targeted at young people and adults to help those that have experienced trauma.

"We will be exploring co-creating development courses that can support people back into work and teaming up with other charities on joint fundraising activities to support their charity and our Foundation.

“Over the next few years ROKT Foundation will be working with partners to become the go-to place for physical activity and mental health programmes that will have direct, measurable and evaluated benefits to people across West Yorkshire and beyond.”