The Upper Wharfedale Fell Rescue Team has been saving lives above and below ground for over 67 years and indeed their current base was the first ever purpose-built Mountain Rescue Post in the country when it was opened by Prince Charles back in 1978. It is therefore somewhat ironic that due to the huge increase in the demand for their services over the years their headquarters in Grassington is now deemed no longer fit for purpose.
The team have spent many years attempting to raise the funds but in the end they decided that saving lives came first and the build would have to go ahead even though they only had half of the £250,000 needed .
Much to their delight they have just had a significant boost to their funds from a government scheme that can direct some company landfill taxation to local community projects.
The team have been informed that they are to receive £25,000 from Tarmac who are part of CRH group who own and run landfill sites in the Dales.
UWFRA Chairman Peter Huff explains the scheme: ‘’ We applied for some funding support from the Landfill Community Scheme last year. The Fund is a tax credit scheme enabling operators of landfill sites to contribute a portion of their landfill tax liability to local communities and environmental organisations to try offset some of the impact of living and operating amongst the company activities ‘’.
As well as directly helping organisations like UWFRA, the grant in effect doubles up in the local community as part of the conditions require recipients to allow local community groups to have some use of the facilities paid for by the grant.
Adds Peter: ‘’In our case this will cover the new meeting and lecture room, the new training area and the kitchen and toilet facilities .We have yet to work out how this occasional use can best work amongst our call-outs but it’s a good scheme and we look forward to helping these local groups in this way’’.
Correspondent David Dennis, Upper Wharfedale Fell Rescue Team