AN audiologist from Renfrewshire has pledged to climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge to raise vital funds for Australian wildlife left devastated by bushfires.

Ryan Forbes, 36, will travel to Australia on March 6 to take part in a week-long fact-finding mission for Specsavers Audiology, exploring the work and technology of audiologists from across the globe.

Determined to make the trip to Australia count while leading a small group of audiology partners from across the UK, Ryan will walk the iconic bridge if the £2,000 fundraising target is exceeded ahead of the working trip.

The money raised will be donated to conservation organisation WWF Australia after millions of hectares of land were scorched by the most devastating bushfire season the country has ever seen.

Ryan, from Paisley, said: “More than 12 million hectares have been burnt and the number is continuing to climb as fires devastate the Australian bush.

“Animals have always been very close to my heart, which is why I’m fundraising for this truly worthy cause ahead of our pending trip.”

With a number of species already on the brink of extinction, the work of WWF Australia is invaluable.

Providing emergency funds to care for injured wildlife, the charity helps to restore homes for koalas and other wildlife while planting more than 10,000 trees which are urgently required within koala habitats.

Ryan, who is audiology director for Specsavers at the firm’s Glasgow Trongate store, continued: “If I reach my target, I will climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge, which will take three-and-a-half hours, following our already-mammoth trip Down Under.

“Animals don’t have a voice or the ability to repair or protect their homes, which is why they desperately need our help and donations to recover.

“I would therefore ask, if you can spare any donations to contribute towards my appeal, it would be greatly appreciated. I will hand over any funds raised to WWF Australia as part of our Australian trip.”

Lives, homes and an estimated 1.25 billion animals have been affected, including 30 per cent of the entire koala population in the mid-north coast of New South Wales. These catastrophic megafires are worsening the extinction crisis already faced by koala bears.

To donate to Ryan’s appeal, visit