In the mid-1960s the Lyke Wake Walk was becoming increasingly popular but a growing number of people were getting lost or suffering injuries whilst attempting the 42-mile walk.
The National Park Wardens were having to deal with the problems and as a result they decided to form two Rescue Teams; two were needed due to the vast area of the moors. Cleveland Search & Rescue Team were formed to cover the northern area and our sister team, Scarborough & Ryedale Search & Rescue Team covered the southern area.
Since those days, when we relied on Team members’ Land Rovers for transport and borrowed and begged equipment, we have evolved to be amongst the best equipped and most highly trained mountain rescue teams in the country.
In 2012 in line with most of the other upland rescue teams in the country we renamed ourselves Cleveland Mountain Rescue Team.
Since our foundation in 1965 we have been called out over 1800 times. Initially most of our incidents were searches, often linked to the Lyke Wake Walk, with the occasional walker suffering a broken leg after a fall. In the last twenty years or so, the popularity of country walking and running has increased and so, along with increased use of mountain bikes and paragliders, we now have had to deal with more serious injuries.
The ratio of searches to rescues has changed; now about one-third of our call-outs are searches. The number of lost or overdue walkers has tended to reduce, so that these days most searches will involve us looking for vulnerable people, particularly those suffering from depression or dementia.
Recently we have also become much more water aware and are trained and equipped to work in flood situations such as at York in December 2015.
One thing hasn’t changed in the last 50+ years: the Team is still made up of people from all walks of life who are experienced hill-goers and who are willing to drop whatever they are doing 24-hours a day, 365-days a year to go to the help of those lost or injured. Just as in 1965 we are still all unpaid volunteers.
Applications can be made to join the team in a support role (Operational Support) or as a hill going (Search and Rescue) member.
Applications for either role can be made at any time. Intakes for Operational Support members occur at various times of the year. There is one annual intake for Search and Rescue normally each September.Join Now