How to join the RAF Mountain Rescue Service?

I live in Cumbria and see the RAF MRT in town quite a bit.

Usually in the supermarket buying beer.

Not entirely sure what they’re for, we already have about 8 volunteer mountain rescue teams in the Lakes.

Someone told me their main job is to secure crash sites and gather up anything dangerous or sensitive. They leave the actual rescuing stuff to the civvy MRTs and emergency services.

Probably a good gig if you like hill walking and hanging around in the lakes.
I'd guess when RAF MR started it was still early days for the civvy teams, who had nothing like the resources and abilities they have now. And a lot more aircraft being stuffed into high ground back in the 50's and 60's.
 
When military SAR was handed over to HM Coastguard in 2016, the RAF MRS were retained because we (UK plc) have a requirement to provide a 24/7 capability. This is to guard aircraft crash sites, render aid to and retrieve the injured and ensure that a/ evidence remains free from tampering, and b/ members of the public are protected from harm by inadvertently straying into crash sites that may have noxious / harmful substances therein (think carbon fibre or kapton wiring). There remain 3 RAF MR teams at Lossiemouth, Leeming and Valley, under the OpCon of 85 Eng & Logs Wg at RAF Wittering. There used to be a 4th (at RAF Stafford if memory serves correctly) but they have long since folded.

RAF Mountain Rescue Association – RAF MRA Website

RAF Mountain Rescue Service prepares for harsh weather | Royal Air Force

There are several civvy MR teams covering the Lakes in the same way as there are in the Cairngorms, North Wales and the NW Highlands. I'd describe the relationships between civvy MRTs who cover overlapping patches of ground to be fractious to put it mildly. Not one of them can be tasked onto an aircraft crash site for the purposes of cordoning / guarding. Given the specialist and extremely expensive nature of the equipment required to operate in a remote HAZMAT environment, few if any civvy MR teams would be able to afford this; it also wouldn't be worth their while keeping and maintaining it, given the likelihood of the requirement to use it.

Lastly, RAF MRS do not "leave the actual rescuing stuff to the civvy MRTs and emergency services.", they are routinely called upon by civpol etc to conduct mountain rescue activity. RAF MRS teams assist the civpol and HM Coastguard when / where requested under MACA (dependent upon which agency has primacy).

The commitment required for an individual to achieve - and retain - his / her place on a team is quite intense; a friend of mine who has played that game in the past reckoned that they found it harder to qualify as MR than it was to qualify as NCO Aircrew. With all of the above in mind, I don't grudge them a few beers from the offy.
 
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...There remain 3 RAF MR teams at Lossiemouth, Leeming and Valley, under the OpCon of 85 Eng & Logs Wg at RAF Wittering. There used to be a 4th (at RAF Stafford if memory serves correctly) but they have long since folded...
I think you're right, Stafford does ring a bell.
 
What? They've disbanded the RAF Lincolnshire Mountain Rescue? ;-)
We did form the Boston MRT whilst on bolthole to Coningsby - obviously in name only and an excuse for pub crawls.
 
AP3392, Vol 2, leaflet 1552 is what you need. Accessible on MODNET.

Full time membership for regular RAF personnel; part time membership for holders of a MOD90 (irrespective of service at discretion of the Team Leader).
Honorary members not unknown.
 
I live in Cumbria and see the RAF MRT in town quite a bit.

Usually in the supermarket buying beer.

Not entirely sure what they’re for, we already have about 8 volunteer mountain rescue teams in the Lakes.

Someone told me their main job is to secure crash sites and gather up anything dangerous or sensitive. They leave the actual rescuing stuff to the civvy MRTs and emergency services.

Probably a good gig if you like hill walking and hanging around in the lakes.
They do secure crash sites but mainly drag lost people or bodies off the hill. They don't leave the actual rescuing stuff to civvies, they do work together a lot of the time. They were doing it long before most vol civvy teams and in many ways wrote the book.

Since they're volunteers, apart from a couple of perm staff, as well as doing their day time job the good gig is debatable, lot of people used to go for it and drop out quickly because of the commitment.
 

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They do secure crash sites but mainly drag lost people or bodies off the hill. They don't leave the actual rescuing stuff to civvies, they do work together a lot of the time. They were doing it long before most vol civvy teams and in many ways wrote the book.

Since they're volunteers, apart from a couple of perm staff, as well as doing their day time job the good gig is debatable, lot of people used to go for it and drop out quickly because of the commitment.
I assumed it was a an actual trade in the RAF. Didn’t realise it was a voluntary extra duty.
 
I assumed it was a an actual trade in the RAF. Didn’t realise it was a voluntary extra duty.
They put a lot of hours in and even if they're lucky enough to get selected as a Team Leader of Deputy they still have to have progressed to their rank in their trade. So they'll be a SNCO with about 10 years of not having much in the way of weekends. Marriage killer.
 
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Being based at the right location for a team used to be the starting point.
 
@siveson have a wander up a mountain in the back end of September in Union Jack shorts and flip flops, wait for the rescue team to locate you, then offer them all noshes. They will immediately see your value, and instantly extend an invitation.
 
I live in Cumbria and see the RAF MRT in town quite a bit.

Usually in the supermarket buying beer.

Not entirely sure what they’re for, we already have about 8 volunteer mountain rescue teams in the Lakes.

Someone told me their main job is to secure crash sites and gather up anything dangerous or sensitive. They leave the actual rescuing stuff to the civvy MRTs and emergency services.

Probably a good gig if you like hill walking and hanging around in the lakes.
I worked, years back, with a young lady from Penrith MRT, who trained rescue dogs in her spare time.
She'd learned mountaineering, and rescue, on South Georgia and Antarctica as part of the British Antarctic Survey crew.
 

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I worked, years back, with a young lady from Penrith MRT, who trained rescue dogs in her spare time.
She'd learned mountaineering, and rescue, on South Georgia and Antarctica as part of the British Antarctic Survey crew.
A lot of them drink in our pub. Great bunch.

I also work with quite a few of the lads in the Western MRTs.

Joining the MRT is on my bucket list once the Navy Reserves throw me out.
 
A lot of them drink in our pub. Great bunch.

I also work with quite a few of the lads in the Western MRTs.

Joining the MRT is on my bucket list once the Navy Reserves throw me out.
From my experience down here, I’d suggest you get your name on their waiting list and get your face know*. There are 18+ month waits to even get onto a trial weekend.


*not a problem in your case, I suspect.
 
I live in Cumbria and see the RAF MRT in town quite a bit.

Usually in the supermarket buying beer.

Not entirely sure what they’re for, we already have about 8 volunteer mountain rescue teams in the Lakes.

Someone told me their main job is to secure crash sites and gather up anything dangerous or sensitive. They leave the actual rescuing stuff to the civvy MRTs and emergency services.

Probably a good gig if you like hill walking and hanging around in the lakes.
Not to sure but back a few years ago I was an avid climber. With luck I was posted to Donnington, Shropshire , Behind the wire as they used to say , so we had MOD Plod with MP 5s to look after after us and better not a lot of work to do.

As was we had not much work to do , I took time to take in as many Army courses and AT courses I could, becoming a Mountain Leader, you can take people to walk up hills, also a JSRL. Joint Service Rock Leader. , you can take people rock climbing.

One day with nothing to do , I asked Pat , the other bloke in the workshop if he fancied a climb.


OK.


Blagged a minibus , fuel and time off to do AT.

Drove to Snowdonia, Idwal slabs, Faith , Hope and Charity are well known climbs.

Not hard climbs at all.
We arrived at about 10. Met the RAF Mountain Rescue team doing training. They had all the gear.

We had a couple of the original willans harnesses , an 11 mil rope and wearing BCH.
did Hope as they were doing prep work, walked back down , started Faith and it started to rain, we got out our , remember the chip packet water proofs? Started Faith. RAF Mountain rescue? Walked away as it was raining. They had bloody gortex .
 

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From my experience down here, I’d suggest you get your name on their waiting list and get your face know*. There are 18+ month waits to even get onto a trial weekend.


*not a problem in your case, I suspect.
They do a recruiting drive every year or so. I don’t think they’re fighting off applicants with a shitty stick, but they’re certainly not struggling either.

Lots of mountains up here and lots of teams. I have a few options, I live fairly equidistant between two teams and work equidistant between another two.

Also a lot to be said for who you know up here. I’ve got mates and acquaintances in all the local teams either from work or from serving them beer.

It’s a long way off anyway. I haven’t got time at the moment. Once I get bored of being a 22 year AB then I’ll give it a shot.
 
Not to sure but back a few years ago I was an avid climber. With luck I was posted to Donnington, Shropshire , Behind the wire as they used to say , so we had MOD Plod with MP 5s to look after after us and better not a lot of work to do.

As was we had not much work to do , I took time to take in as many Army courses and AT courses I could, becoming a Mountain Leader, you can take people to walk up hills, also a JSRL. Joint Service Rock Leader. , you can take people rock climbing.

One day with nothing to do , I asked Pat , the other bloke in the workshop if he fancied a climb.


OK.


Blagged a minibus , fuel and time off to do AT.

Drove to Snowdonia, Idwal slabs, Faith , Hope and Charity are well known climbs.

Not hard climbs at all.
We arrived at about 10. Met the RAF Mountain Rescue team doing training. They had all the gear.

We had a couple of the original willans harnesses , an 11 mil rope and wearing BCH.
did Hope as they were doing prep work, walked back down , started Faith and it started to rain, we got out our , remember the chip packet water proofs? Started Faith. RAF Mountain rescue? Walked away as it was raining. They had bloody gortex .
Conserving the dynamic properties of their ropes in case they got a shout?
 
I'd guess when RAF MR started it was still early days for the civvy teams, who had nothing like the resources and abilities they have now. And a lot more aircraft being stuffed into high ground back in the 50's and 60's.
My late uncle was part of the Lossiemouth MRT in the 60s. He always claimed he got his third tape for finding some secret kit that had been lost from a plane that creamed in somewhere in the highlands.
 

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