YOUNG mountaineer Tesni Francis-Parker has become the youngest person from Wales to scale Africa’s tallest mountain.

The 12-year-old schoolgirl from Abergavenny conquered Tanzania’s 5,895-metre tall Mount Kilimanjaro on Sunday morning, following a six-hour final ascent with her father, Gary Parker.

Speaking after her climb to the 'roof of Africa', Tesni said: “The climb was great and reaching the top was amazing. I feel like everything I've worked for and trained for up to this point in readiness for the climb paid off.”

Mr Parker, 63, leads mountaineering expeditions around the globe and has climbed Kilimanjaro six times.

He said: “I couldn’t be more proud of Tesni and all that she’s achieved on this trip.”

Mr Parker revealed the ascent almost had to be abandoned at the eleventh hour, when severe sickness struck the pair.

“We were both knocked out with a severe stomach bug which we think we may have picked up from the pizza we had the night before we set off," he said. "It was pretty debilitating but Tesni wanted to carry on and so did I."

He added: “Tesni said she felt ‘amazing’ at the top. She just gritted her teeth and just got on with it. She’s a plucky girl.”

Tesni, who is on extended half term leave from her school, is due back at her lessons next Monday after recovering from her climb and enjoying a two-day safari.

Global expedition leader and adventurer Mr Parker said he believed adventure must be in Tesni’s genes. As well as his own treks and adventures to the four corners of the globe, her mother, Liz, is an international runner and has also climbed Kilimanjaro.

“I’m thrilled that Tesni is following in my footsteps, so to speak," Mr Parker said. "I have never forced her to do any of this, but I love to see the pleasure she gets out of going to the mountains and the sense of freedom it gives her. I hope it continues to give her pleasure and to make her happy."