Welcome to VIclimbing.com

We have created VIclimbing.com to help make climbing more accessible to people with a visual impairment. John and Lauren have called upon their real-world experiences as a blind paraclimber and sighted guide to create a series of how-to guides for climbers, instructors, friends and family.

Lauren looks up wearing a bobble hat and microphone. John is half way up a wall peppered with climbing holds.

Jump straight in.

Not sure how to guide a blind person around a climbing centre?

Can’t see but would like to route read?

Take a look at the blog for top tips and climbing stories.

John smiles. Climbing wall panels can be seen in the background

John Churcher

John is an accomplished climber, having spent 7 years on the GB paraclimbing team. He was the first blind person to summit the Eiger and has several international medals. He regularly climbs indoors and leads trad routes outside. 

John is registered deafblind. He has competed in the B2 category for competition and his sight loss is caused by a condition known as Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP). John has recently been reclassified as a B1 athlete which is for those with little or no useful vision. He has around 50% hearing and uses 2 hearing aids.

Lauren is posed awkwardly on the edge of the screen and john is visible in the background. Selfies.

Lauren Bean

Lauren has worked in the outdoor industry since 2012 and enjoys climbing. Until she met John in 2017, she had limited experience working with visually impaired people, which she likes to think that this proves that any willing person can be a sighted guide.

Together Lauren and John do many sports and activities together and make videos on social media as ‘The T-shirt Twins’. See what they have been up to lately by heading to their facebook page.

This website has been made possible with the support of:

The Alpkit Foundation

The British Mountaineering Council recognises that climbing and mountaineering are activities with a danger of personal injury or death. Participants in these activities should be aware of and accept these risks and be responsible for their own actions.