Dundonnell rescue team take delivery of new Land Rover

Dundonnell Mountain Rescue Team is delighted to have taken delivery of a new Land Rover Defender long wheel base ambulance to replace a 12-year old vehicle which was at the end of its service life.

The bulk of the cost of the new £24,000 vehicle has been gifted to the team by the Order of St. John, a major international charity, which amongst other activities, finances bases and vehicles for mountain rescue teams across the country.

Keith Bryers, chairman of DMRT, said: “We are very fortunate to have again received very timely and generous help from the Order of St John to replace our much-needed Land Rover which was itself also funded by the Order. We have found that only a Land Rover can get to some of the locations we need to reach quickly with personnel and bulky rescue gear to then continue on to a rescue or search location on foot.  We are grateful to have this help from the Order, building on their past assistance with our bases at Ullapool and Dundonnell.”

Bob Fullerton, chairman of St John Scotland’s Highland Area, said: “I’ve been fortunate enough to visit Dundonnell Mountain Rescue Team on several occasions and I have particularly fond memories of the wonderful day, a number of years ago now, when my wife and I attended the handover of the team’s St John Scotland rescue base.

“St John Scotland has committed to long term support to mountain rescue services and it is thanks to a rolling programme of replacing older vehicles that we have been able to make a significant contribution to the purchase of this new vehicle for Dundonnell. We are proud to assist these teams of volunteers who regularly risk their own lives to help others, not just in the mountains, but increasingly in other difficult and dangerous situations.

“In recent years St John Scotland has contributed around £2.3 million to mountain rescue in Scotland and we sincerely hope that this new vehicle will allow the Dundonnell team to keep up the magnificent work they do.”

The rescue team of around 40 volunteers covers some 2,600 square miles of rugged and remote mountainous terrain and is available, at the request of Police Scotland, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to help anyone in difficulty on the hills.

DMRT has vehicles based at Ullapool, Gairloch, Dundonnell and Dingwall with members living on both the east and west coasts of the Highlands.

Pictured are Dundonnell MRT’s Ken Keith (left) who looks on as rescue team chairman, Keith Bryers, is handed over the new Land Rover’s keys by Charlie Shepherd of Macrae and Dick, Inverness (right), watched by Bob Fullerton of St John, who funded the new vehicle.