Stephen Venables (born 2nd May 1954) is a British mountaineer and writer, and is a past president of the South Georgia Association and of the Alpine Club. He is also writer, broadcaster and public speaker, was the first Briton to climb Everest without supplementary oxygen. He reached the summit alone, after climbing with a small American-Canadian team, by a new route up the gigantic Kangshung face of Everest. Venables’s other Himalayan first ascents include new routes in the Hindu Kush (1977), Kishtwar Shivling (1983), Solu Tower (1987), the south-west ridge of Kusum Kanguru (1991) and Panch Chuli V (1992). He has made first ascents of many previously unknown mountains. His adventures have also taken him to the Rockies, the Andes, the Antarctic island South Georgia, East Africa, South Africa and of course the European Alps, where he has climbed and skied for over forty years. The stories of these travels have enthralled Stephen’s lecture audiences in theatres, schools and university clubs and at corporate conferences all over the world. He has also appeared in television documentaries for BBC, ITV and National Geographic, presented for Radio 4 and appeared in the IMAX movie Shackleton’s Antarctic Adventure. He has written for all London newspapers, covering exploration and adventure, as well as diverse subjects such as transport, gardening, music and sculpture. Painted Mountains, Stephen’s first book, won the 1986 Boardman Tasker Prize for mountain literature. Subsequent books have won the Grand Prize at the Banff International Mountain Festival and the King Albert Award.