Bigger and better home for rescue team

Bigger and better home for rescue team

Published at 6:03am 28th February 2017.

Rescuers in the Dales finally have a base fit for the 21st century.

Upper Wharfedale Fell Rescue Association's headquarters in Grassington has been extended at a cost of £300,000.

It gives the volunteers more space for their vehicles and other equipment, as well as new facilities including an indoor training area.

The team were originally based in an old goods van and then a disused signal hut at the former railway station.

In 1976, they moved into a purpose-built headquarters on Hebden Road which became known as The Hut.

However, an ever-increasing demand for their services means that they need a much bigger and better home.

Team controller Derek Hammond told Stray FM: "We integrate far more now with the other emergency services. We're linked to the police, ambulance and helicopter control rooms, we can track people on satellite mapping, which is really useful for us, but we need the environment to do it. The radios, internet connectivity and space to put the computers etc is a real benefit to us.

"We're very, very grateful to all those who've donated to the team. Our running costs are still £45,000 a year, give or take, and we have an ever-increasing training burden as everybody moves to being more professional. We're sending people out on courses on a regular basis, whether it's for water rescue, blue light driving etc, all that costs money and we rely on the generosity of the public to help us do that and provide a professional service."

Upper Wharfedale Fell Rescue Association

The new indoor training area

Upper Wharfedale Fell Rescue Association

Some of the water rescue equipment used by volunteers