Mountain rescue team to build new base after volunteers raise £185,000

ONE of Scotland's busiest mountain rescue teams will soon be carrying out their life-saving operations from a brand new HQ after a massive fundraising effort.

Dundonnell Mountain Rescue Team with their team of fundraisers, whose efforts will help build a new base. Picture: Contributed

After a two-year funding campaign, Dundonnell Mountain Rescue Team (DMRT) has announced that it has reached its £185,000 target to enable them to build a base in Dingwall.

The group of local volunteers, who provide a mountain rescue service over a huge area of the north and west Highlands, have raised the amazing sum.

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The base has been designed by local firm Reynolds Architecture and a building contract has been awarded to Dingwall-based contractor J C Cameron Ltd.

The new HQ, at Dingwall Business Park will be complete in September and will provide a secure garage for the team’s East Coast vehicles, a training room and stores.

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It will also be a place for members of the team to undertake training events and muster on being called out by Police Scotland.

The team of around 40 volunteers is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to help anyone in difficulty on the hills.

Its territory covers some 2,600 square miles of rugged and remote mountainous terrain, including Coigach, An Teallach, Fisherfield and Letterewe forests, the Fannichs, Beinn Dearg, Ben Wyvis, Glen Affric, Mullardoch and Strathfarrar/Monar, going as far south as Invermoriston and taking in 41 Munros and some 75 other mountains of note.

The team already has rescue posts at Dundonnell, Ullapool and Gairloch and has vehicles based at these locations plus Dingwall. Members are spread throughout the various communities in the team’s area.

Keith Bryers, chair of the DMRT board of trustees, said: “In the past we were very fortunate to have had terrific support from St John Scotland who provided our bases at Ullapool and Dundonnell, as well as some of our vehicles.

“We are now very pleased to be able to get our long-desired Dingwall base started thanks to the generosity of our major funders, the Robertson Trust, Sportscotland, Stafford Trust, Crerar Hotels Trust, SSE Fairburn Community Windfarm Trust, Robert Barr Trust, Foyle Foundation, Basil Samuel Trust, Nancy Massey Trust, Lochluichart Community Trust, W M Mann Trust, AMW Trust, Scottish Mountaineering Trust, Strathconon & Scardroy Estate, Letterewe Estate and Lifescan Scotland. We have also had donations from a number of smaller donors.”