A growing partnership between the Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service (GFRS) and the Severn Area Rescue Association (SARA) has enabled the search and rescue charity to establish a new base.
GFRS offered to use the premises of the Cirencester fire station to help SARA establish a base in the Cotswolds.
SARA will have parking spaces for their support vehicles, storage space for their equipment and a meeting and training room, as well as a kitchen and toilets within the fire station.
The offer was made at no cost to SARA as they work closely with GFRS and Gloucestershire Constabulary to provide incident support including search and rescue operations inland.
SARA volunteers often help search rural areas and the charity has trained advanced rescuers trained in mountain rescue standards, along with other essential equipment and medicines, to treat the injured and bring them safely. security in an ambulance.
It is hoped that this new base will significantly improve the response to urgent searches in the east of the county and that it should be operational in a few months.
Mark Preece, GFRS Fire Chief, said: “It is great news that we are able to welcome the Severn Area Rescue Association to the Cirencester Fire Station. We are working closely with them on many incidents, including searches for missing persons, so this can only help improve the response to those at risk. “
Cllr Dave Norman, member of the cabinet responsible for fire and rescue services, said: “I am delighted that we are able to give the Severn Area Rescue Association a new base at the Cirencester Fire Hall.
“Their support and expertise in the search for missing persons is invaluable, so having a base in the Cotswolds will strengthen our collaborative work and help provide the fastest possible response to any incident in this area. “
John Dutton, SARA Land Search Manager, said: “This new base will significantly improve our ability to search and locate missing persons in the Cotswolds and eastern Gloucestershire. We are very grateful to GFRS for creating suitable facilities. available and we look forward to meeting and getting to know the local community over the next few months.
Deputy Chief Constable Rhiannon Kirk, Gloucestershire Gendarmerie, said: “Working with agencies like SARA and our fellow firefighters is essential in helping us locate many missing people each year, so this example of collaborative action is great news.
“SARA provides specialist expertise on water and land, so their increased presence in a rural area like the Cotswolds is a very welcome development that will further strengthen our response.”