The Northumberland National Park Mountain Rescue Team provide a vital service in providing search and rescue cover for the whole of the Northumbria Police area. This is a vast and largely remote and unpopulated area encompassing all of Northumberland and Tyne and Wear, and measuring approximately 5000 square kilometers (3000 square miles). The team are members of NESRA, the North East Search and Rescue Association, one of the regional panels which constitute Mountain Rescue (England and Wales) the national governing body for all mountain rescue teams. As a secondary responsibility we can be called to assist one of the other NESRA teams on a protracted or difficult incident and similarly we can call upon them for assistance when required.
The team, in common with all mountain rescue teams in England and Wales, is made up entirely of volunteers who give of their time freely and without financial reward. Team members are comitted individuals, outdoor people who already have a high degree of competency in outdoor skills and are keen to 'put something back' into the activity which they enjoy. The team train regularly and members are expected to attend at least 50% of all training in order to consolidate and develop their skills and remain on the call-out list. There are opportunities for members to extend their skills with advanced training in a number of discreet areas of team operations.
Although voluntary in nature we pride ourselves on the 'professional' service which we provide.
This was the 4th running of this event which started and finished at Edges Green on Sunday 29th June. From Edges Green the run went out east toward Steel Rigg, along the line of Crag Lough then north along the Pennine Way into Wark Forest before turning West back to Edges Green.
The event is the brainchild of Ian Cowell a Tynedale Harrier and an ex-fell runner himself. He still competes in road races and mountain marathons and set up this event in 2010 to take in some of the most beautiful Northumberland countryside in the setting of The World Heritage site of Hadrian’s Wall. It attracts national interest and the event has grown since 2010 to now host the maximum of 500 competitors. ‘This year’ Ian comments, ‘ is the biggest and best.’
As a Venture Scout Leader and lover of the outdoors Ian has made the Northumberland National Park Mountain Rescue Team (NNPMRT) as the main beneficiary of funds raised by the event. He says that ‘he wanted to put something back into a group of dedicated professionals that are available to help people involved in outdoor activities; it is reassuring to know someone is there to help when needed.’
Pete Roberts, Team Leader of NNPMRT said that ‘increasingly we see it as part of our role in preventative mountain rescue to support such events’ and noted that, ‘ the Team would benefit from a donation of about £1600 from the organisers’. The Team is a registered charity and the two fully equipped Landrovers they had at the event cost in the region of £120000, paid for by fund raising events and charitable donations.
This year’s winner was Conrad Franks, a Gateshead Harrier, who completed the course in 84 minutes – Conrad won in 2012 and 2013 - Pete was pleased to welcome Conrad home as he taught him at Gosforth High school about 10 years ago.
Ian Cowell, the event organiser, thanked the National Trust, Northumberland National Park and English Heritage for their support and cooperation in staging the event and added a big thank you to Willie Wetherson the farmer at Edges Green who not only made his land available but acted as a marshall to park the cars and fetched the water for the Teas Coffee!Read More...View More News