A FORMER Antarctica weatherman from Stourport will set out on a month-long, 10,000 mile drive across the world in aid of two charities.

John Griffiths, aged 32, starts his intrepid journey from London to Ulaanbaatar in Mongolia today (Friday, July 19).

He is taking part in a Mongol Rally, which challenges daring souls to journey across the globe in a 'banger' car with a 1.1ltr engine or less.

John's vehicle for the trip, a Volkswagen Polo from 2000, has an engine just under 1 litre.

He will be driving through Europe headed to Istanbul, then across the Middle East to Baku, then through Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Russia, and finally arriving in Mongolia.

John is aiming to raise £1000 pounds for the Cool Earth charity, which protects rainforests, as well as Bowel Cancer UK.

Malvern Gazette:

The explorer, who now works for an environmental software company, is no stranger to expeditions, having lived in Antarctica working as a weather forecaster for a few years, and later travelling to the Himalayas, where he helped instal the 4th highest weather station in the world.

John said: "I do a lot of expeditions in my spare time. I've got a bug for them.

"I feel quite calm about the rally.

"The car is pretty much good to go, it's in the final stages now.

"We'll find out shortly if it's good enough to make the trip.

"Once we leave EU the roads will slowly deteriorate until we get to Mongolia where they are effectively just dirt roads. The trip will take a month.

"I have got Sponsorship from Silent Pool Gin as well as KISTERS the environmental software company I work for. And GASP who provided the car are a charity organization who help teach car mechanics to young adults."