Published: 8th June 2017

Sir Ranulph Fiennes calls it a case of 'Mind Over Matter'

‘World’s Greatest Living Explorer’ returns to the stage with UK theatre tour

Described by the Guinness Book of Records as ‘the world’s greatest living explorer’, Sir Ranulph Fiennes’ exploits, escapades and expeditions have taken him in almost every direction around the globe, including the 52,000 mile odyssey through both poles in the first circumpolar navigation of the Earth (1979-82), the first unsupported crossing of Antarctica (1993) and the first crossing of the Antarctic Continent by foot

Having completed the Marathon des Sables, aged 71, in 2015 (dubbed the ‘toughest footrace on Earth) to become the oldest (then) Brit to complete it, whilst raising another £1m for Marie Curie Cancer Care, and fresh from the latest stage of his latest Global Reach Challenge – where he is attempting to become the first person ever to cross both polar caps and summit the highest mountain on each continent - living legend Sir Ranulph Fiennes is set to embark upon another adventure this summer as he takes to UK theatre stages to recount the hugely impressive and inspiring story of his exceptionally full life in an ‘audience with…’ style theatre show, MIND OVER MATTER, presented by adventure-based speakers specialists, Speakers from the Edge, and in association with Berghaus

Sir Ranulph has led over 30 expeditions, climbed to the highest peak on the planet to become the oldest Briton to do so, discovered the lost Arabian city of Ubar, climbed one of the world’s toughest ascents (the dreaded North Face of the Eiger) and conquered the first 7x7x7 Challenge; seven marathons, on seven continents, in seven consecutive days just three months after a massive heart attack, a three-day coma and a double bypass operation, and has raised many millions of pounds for charities in the process

MIND OVER MATTER offers another opportunity to hear Sir Ranulph recount the personal journey through his life. From light-hearted to strikingly poignant, MIND OVER MATTER is the inspirational story of Sir Ranulph’s life of conquering several of the most challenging, record-breaking, expeditions and adventures on Planet Earth 

MIND OVER MATTER is touring UK theatres, from Tuesday, 27 June, to Tuesday, 18 July. For tour dates and booking details visit,


Editors notes

Sir Ranulph Fiennes - Born in the UK in 1944, just after his father was killed in the war, Sir Ranulph was brought up by his mother in South Africa. Returning to the UK to attend Eton, Sir Ranulph left school having failed his A levels. He joined the Royal Scots Greats (Tanks) and later the SAS and became the youngest Captain in the British Army.

Following a campaign against Marxist Terrorists between 1968-1970, Sir Ranulph was awarded the Sultan of Oman's Bravery Medal in 1970 by HM The Queen. The same year saw Sir Ranulph marry his childhood sweetheart Ginny Pepper and together they launched a series of record breaking expeditions that kept them ahead of their international rivals for three decades.

He planned, organised and took part in the first polar circumnavigation of Earth (1979-1982) - a 3 year, 52, 000 mile odyssey which took intricate planning and a 52 person team to achieve. Sir Ranulph personally raised over £29 million in sponsorship (1900 sponsors from 18 countries) along the way to fund one of the most ambitious expeditions of the twentieth century.

Other expeditions include the discovery of the lost Arabian city of Ubar, The first hovercraft ascent of the Nile, the first crossing of Antarctica and the Arctic Ocean, and the first unsupported crossing of the Antarctic Continent.

In 2003, only 3½ months after a massive heart attack, 3-day coma and double bypass, Ranulph Fiennes (with Mike Stroud) achieved the first 7x7x7 (Seven marathons in seven consecutive days on all seven continents).

Sir Ranulph tragically lost his first wife to cancer in 2004 and has subsequently gone on to raise almost £20million (his lifetime target figure) for Marie Curie Cancer Care

In March 2005, Ranulph made his first attempt to climb Everest (Tibet-side) getting to within 300m of summit and raising £2 million for the British Heart Foundations new research MRI scanner.

In March 2007, Sir Ranulph climbed the North Face of the Eiger (with Kenton Cool and Ian Parnell) and raised £1.8 million for Marie Curie Cancer Care's Delivering Choice Programme.

May 2008, Sir Ranulph made his second attempt to climb Everest (Nepal-side) this time coming to within 400m from summit and raising £2.5m for Marie Curie Cancer Care Delivering Choice Programme. 

In May 2009 Sir Ranulph finally successfully summited Everest at the age of 64 with Thundu Sherpa and became the oldest Briton ever to summit. He again raised funds for Marie Curie Cancer

In 2013, Sir Ranulph attempted to lead the first attempt to cross Antarctica during the southern winter. He had to pull out of The Coldest Journey in February of that year due to frostbite

In May 2015, Sir Ranulph became (at the time) the oldest Brit to complete the Marathon des Sables – across the Sahara - dubbed ‘the toughest footrace on Earth’ 

He is currently attempting to become the first person to have crossed both polar ice caps and climbed the highest mountain on each continent in the Global Reach Challenge, again to raise funds for Marie Curie Cancer Care. Sir Ranulph had already crossed both polar ice caps (1982), climbed Asia’s Mt. Everest (2009) and Africa’s Mt. Kilimanjaro (2004)

He is the author of 21 books, including his autobiography, Mad, Bad & Dangerous to Know, and his most recent FEAR (2016)

Sir Ranulph lives with his second wife Louise and their daughter Elizabeth.


French Parachute Wings 1968

Dhofar Campaign Medal 1968

Sultan of Oman's Bravery Medal 1970

Man of the Year 1982

Livingstone Gold Medal Royal Scottish Geographical Soc 1983

Gold Medal NY Explorers Club 1984

Described by Guiness Book of Records as "The World's Greatest Living Explorer" 1984

Founder's Medal RGS 1984

The Polar Medal 1984 with Bar 1995 by HM the Queen (his wife Ginnie was first female recipient)

ITV Award for Event of the Decade 1990

OBE "human endeavour and charitable services", 1993 

Explorers Club (Br Chapter) Millennium Award for Navigation 2000

Oldie of the Year Award 2004

Winner of ITV Greatest Britons 2007 Sport Award 

Hon DSc Loughborough Univ

Hon Dr: UCE 1995, Univ of Portsmouth 2000, Univ of Glasgow 2002, Univ of Sheffield 2005. Abertay University (Dundee) 2007, Plymouth University 2011

In 2015, Sir Ranulph completed the treacherous Marathon des Sables, dubbed the ‘toughest foot race on Earth’

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Sir Ranulph Fiennes | Mind Over Matter
Sir Ranulph Fiennes | Mind Over Matter
Sir Ranulph Fiennes | Mind Over Matter
Sir Ranulph Fiennes | Mind Over Matter