New volunteer recruits for the St John Cliff Rescue Team have just completed a training course on Guernsey’s south coast cliffs, facilitated by two Instructors from the National Mountain Sports Centre in North Wales. These new volunteers with varied climbing backgrounds worked well together to complete the course successfully and are now operational and ready to respond when the need arises.
Over the four days of intensive training the St John volunteers were taken through cliff rescue techniques using specialist equipment. The course culminated in a rescue scenario involving a casualty with leg injuries from the base of cliffs at Pleinmont, a location of the most south westerly point on the island of Guernsey.
These ‘expert’ St John volunteers found the training challenging but very enjoyable. One of them commented that “the course was really good, everything was explained thoroughly with each technique’s different applications and options.” He went on to say “I had a fair knowledge base in respect of climbing to start with and the course has most definately added to both that and the cliff rescue aspects. I think that everyone thoroughly enjoyed the weekend and feel that, on the whole, everyone gelled really well together.”
Following an assessment at the end of the course the successful volunteers will now deploy to rescues alongside established cliff team members.
The existence and operation of the St John Cliff Rescue Team relies on these ‘expert’ volunteers and on financial support from local businesses and donations from the public.