SARA Tewkesbury are proud to announce the completion of ‘Project Landy’, our appeal to fund a second specialist vehicle for our rescue station based at Gloucestershire Water Rescue Station. The appeal began in December 2011 with a target of £20,000. This was raised within six months and enabled the project to complete in September 2012, culminating with the launch of ‘SARA Mobile 11’ at our station open day (22/09/12), where guest of honour was Councillor Philip Surman, Tewkesbury Borough Mayor.
‘Project Landy’ aimed to raise enough money to fund a second specialist rescue vehicle for the station. We had only one vehicle, which severely restricts our operational capability. We were unable to deploy more than one boat at a time, had no proprietary transport for our land search crews, and no way of assisting NHS/Great Western Ambulance Service with transport of medical staff during adverse weather; all problems a second vehicle would remedy.
SARA Tewkesbury has recently entered a new and exciting phase. In a UK first for water rescue, SARA Tewkesbury is cohabitating with Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service (GFRS). This sees our professional volunteer rescue team sharing premises, operations and training with a statutory 999 agency. As a part of this project, Tewkesbury Community Fire Station has been renamed Gloucestershire Water Rescue Centre to better reflect its new purpose. Your help can help us make this a success; this is the first centre of its kind in the UK, and gives Tewkesbury and the wider communities of Gloucestershire a combined flood and water rescue service that is unmatched anywhere in the United Kingdom.
The core vehicle was acquired from a sister Mountain Rescue Team, Calder Valley Search and Rescue Team (CVSRT) and converted for SARA use by Liveridge 4×4. SARA are grateful to both; CVSRT heavily discounted the vehicle to enable us to purchase but were pleased to see the vehicle being retained for rescue where it will continue to save lives; Liveridge 4×4 provided labour for extensive modification at below cost price. In 2007, SARA rescued MD Chris Howard’s father from floods in Tewkesbury and Chris was eager to express his thanks.
Project lead and Station Manager, Tom Keeling, said: We are humbled by the support we have been shown both locally and on a wider scale. While the majority of the funding came from Tewkesbury Borough Council, we are equally grateful to the various Parish Councils, local residents and charitable trusts that also realised the importance of this and donated funds despite the current economic climate. This is a real achievement and an amazing result for us; this will enable us to better serve the communities we support.
The vehicle has been put to immediate use and has already been used to assist the Police with searches in both Gloucester and Evesham, as well as providing regular transport for crew during training.
More details are available here.
- Tewkesbury Borough Council – Main Sponsor
- Chaceley Parish Council
- Stoke Orchard Parish Council
- Tirley Parish Council
- Wheatpieces Parish Council
- Woodmancote Parish Council
- Churchdown Club
- Hazel and Alan Leach
- C Wilkin
- RPJ Davis
- N Hubbard
- Peter Dickinson
- Anne Price
- Waitrose Alcester
- Coop Community Fund
- Wheels 4 Good
- The Bernard Sunley Charitable Foundation
- The Rowlands Trust
- Team Tewkesbury – GWAS Ambulance Team – Rob Trinder, Mark Curtis, Anita Douglas
- The crews, families and supporters of SARA Tewkesbury
Basic Vehicle Spec
Land Rover 110 Station Wagon, TD5 Primary roles – Boat haulage, launch, crew transport
Blue lights, Roof rack and ladder, Sirens, SOLAS Reflective livery, On-board VHF radio, Wading kit, Winch, Hi-lift suspension, HD wheels, Front and rear tow hitches, Driving lights, Recovery points, Rear compartment cage, 360 degree working lights, Onboard stretcher/casualty carrier
- 5 x Crew and all personal water rescue kit and land search kit
- Throwbags and belts, searchlights and handheld VHF and UHF radios
- First Aid kits, Medical Oxygen, scoop stretcher, neck braces
- Swiftwater Rescue rope and pulley kit
- Steep access ropes
- Vehicle recovery straps, pulleys
- Maps and guides, SatNav, Handheld GPS
- Mountain Rescue Casualty Care kit