Thanks for 2009

Buxton Mountain Rescue Team would like to say a huge Thank You to all those who supported the team during 2009.  It is only with such wonderful local support that the team can continue to help those who become distressed or injured in the hills and dales of the Peak District.

In 2009 team members responded to eight-seven requests for assistance from the police and ambulance services around the area. Call-outs were predominately to help injured walkers and climbers, but also included providing assistance to the wider local community with slips and falls in the town’s country parks.  Pets and sheep stranded on cliffs also contributed to the total score.  On twenty-two occasions the team’s three search & rescue dogs were specifically called to help locate lost walkers on the hills or to find missing vulnerable people at lower levels in town and country areas.

The team’s forty-five volunteer members receive no payment or expenses and this vital community service is only sustainable with financial help from local people. The good folk of the High Peak did not let the team down; throughout the year they contributed over £30,000 towards our costs. As volunteers, the team spends all its money wisely to keep its vehicles and life saving equipment in top condition. Our investments in 2009 included new personal protective helmets, and new hand-lamps for operational members. A complete set of new casualty care equipment was also purchased including high-tech patient monitoring equipment and fracture splints. 

Local people were very supportive and contributed significantly through fundraising schemes offered by local supermarkets: Morrison’s, Tesco, Waitrose, and Marks & Spencer all helped to raise money for the team. The small red counter-top collection boxes hosted in dozens of local shops, raised nearly £5,000 alone. Sponsored events brought in extra cash: local runners in half marathons; Steve Lee from Charlotte’s Chocolates went all the way the New York; Debbie Marsden climbed to the top of Mount Kenya in Africa; a supporter from Sale jumped from 14,000 feet in a parachute; and our youngest sponsor, 9 year old James Martin, walked over 190 miles coast-to-coast to raise money.  Local church groups, Women’s Institutes, flower festivals, sports clubs, Derby University students and many others have also worked hard raise money for the team. Our three local MPs even got involved in an exercise to highlight the work of rescue teams and Tom Levit continues to campaign for VAT relief on equipment purchases for all mountain rescue teams.  Fantastic help from fantastic people, and everyone in the Buxton team and the casualties it helps wishes to say a very big thank you.

2010 brings new challenges for us. This year we need to replace the outer waterproof clothing worn by operational members at a hefty cost of nearly £20,000.  New training aids, and some refurbishment to our base at Dove Holes are also desirable. With no central funding or direct grant aid all this is on top of the our general running costs, so team members will again be asking the public for support. 

A spokesman for Buxton MRT said “2009 was a good year for the team which did everything that was asked of it. We definitely saved at least three lives, and helped many more to get to hospital care more quickly.  Call-outs can sometimes be frustrating, even annoying, as they never happen at a convenient moment but overall there is a great satisfaction in being a team member. If you have any fundraising ideas, or think you could make the grade as an operational member, we would love to hear from you.”

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