Training overview

Team members training at base

In a rescue situation people put themselves in our hands. They expect to be kept safe and given appropriate first aid or available medical treatment. Being highly trained in rescue techniques and advanced first aid is fundamental to all operational members.

The mountain rescue skills you require will be taught and maintained during the teams training year. You will fit into one of three stages:

  • Stage 1 covers the elements required for inclusion on the Operational Call-out List.
  • Stage 2 covers the elements required for full membership
  • Stage 3 is an ongoing opportunity for further personal development

After Stage 1 you will be issued with a pager through which you will receive call-out information. A small voluntary contribution towards the cost may be paid to the team should you wish to.

All operational members are required to maintain qualifications such as First Aid at Work and the Mountain Rescue Council Casualty Care Certificate. Courses are provided to prepare for these. The team has minimum standards of competency and core skills must be demonstrated annually. The results are documented and success across the board allows the member to remain on the operational list.

All members are expected to attend a high percentage of training events – there is much to learn and practise.

Training takes place virtually every Thursday evening either at base, or outdoors. A typical outdoor exercise might involve a search for a missing person followed by diagnosis and treatment of any injury or medical condition and an evacuation by stretcher. A debrief will identify good work or learning points. There will be a longer day or night exercise at the weekend 6 or 7 times a year. Every year we hold over 50 training events. The programme covers the full range of skills needed:

  • advanced first aid
  • life support skills
  • search techniques
  • ropework for steep ground or crag situations
  • radio and communications
  • working with RAF helicopters, ambulance and police services
  • working with other rescue teams

Most training is done in-house by members holding appropriate qualifications. It is a mix of formal lectures, discussion groups and practical work. New applicants work to achieve standards set out in a Development Guide and may be required to attend separate training structured to their needs. An excellent training handbook supports our programme and fully sets out techniques used by the team.

All members are expected to attend a high percentage of training events – there is much to learn and practise.