20 Years of Trossachs SAR!

11th September 2018

Having attained 20 years old on Saturday 8 September 2018, we celebrated on Sunday 9 September 2018 evening at Venachar Lochside, near Callander.

The day was fitting as it was also the inaugural Emergency Services Day #999dayuk

We were honoured to welcome Pat Greenhill, Vice Lord Lieutenant for Stirling and Falkirk; Christine Simpson, Provost of Stirling, Rear Admiral Roger Lockwood, Chair of the Scottish Council of the RNLI, Shabir Beg, Chairman of the Scottish Ahlul Bayt Society and Sheenah Nelson, Chair of the Helensburgh and District CPR/Defibrillator Association, Gordon Smith, Area Service Manager from the Scottish Ambulance Service, Rhona Mackinnon from WEL Medical and many other friends and former members.

Thanks were extended to WEL Medical for their kind donation to the event.

Rear Admiral Roger Lockwood served 34 years in the Royal Navy, then as Chief Executive of the Northern Lighthouse Board - responsible for navigational aids at sea and lighthouses and is now a Trustee of the RNLI and Chair of its Scottish Council. Roger held those attending in complete suspense recounting the difficult rescue of the crew of cargo vessel Green Lily by crews from an RNLI lifeboat and HM Coastguard helicopter during which the winchman Bill Deacon lost his life - having saved many of the ship's crew. Heaving seas, gale force winds, masterly seamanship and immense bravery - with 15 lives saved! It brought into focus that so much is done by SAR personnel - all facing the same dangers, whether employed or volunteers. Roger then invited everyone to toast 'Trossachs Search and Rescue Team'.

Our chairman Stuart Ballantyne, gave a moving account of the reasons for the formation of the team, the opposition they had faced that included threats from senior police officers involved in mountain rescue teams to some of the then cops including himself of being moved station and home and of even dismissal from the force, and their determination as founder members not to bow to bullying as they knew their work would prevent accidents, prevent deaths, give the community the skills and equipment they needed to save lives when things did go wrong.

Then there was Stockline and The Clutha - two major incidents the search dogs and our personnel had worked hard at and identified casualties under the rubble; the 20 years of delivering free CPR training, training over 2500 last year alone, the last five years placing public access defibs - now 132 units in communities and 12 lives saved so far. Supporting Police Scotland, Scottish Ambulance Service, Scottish Fire and Rescue and HM Coastguard, NHS Forth Valley and Stirling Council...so many young team members had gone on to joining the emergency services or were in training to become doctors - and that gave him the greatest personal pleasure - to see youngsters leaving and going on to serve the public and have a lifelong career.

What makes our team different? - half of its membership is women, the other half are men - a very different and beneficial partnership compared to all men organisations, bringing different priorities, experiences, skills and determinations.

He closed by thanking the communities and companies who support us, enable us to do our work and made mention that the team was so humbled to receive an award from the community of Fintry - an award that someone had taken the time to make from wood, reproduce our logo, handpaint and varnish - it had pride of place in our base and was truly appreciated by us.

One of the founding members - Judith Shaw, raised another toast.

So, 20 years ticked off - ROLL ON THE NEXT TWENTY!

For all the pictures taken on the evening please visit our Facebook page by clicking here.

Team Member Sarah Wilde has also posted a members perspective of the team at and you can read this here.

Scottish Ambulance Service Awards 2018Scottish Ambulance Service Awards 2018 ►

Scottish Ambulance Service Awards 2018

Heartstart November 2018Heartstart November 2018 ►

Heartstart November 2018

Scottish First Aid Awards 2018Scottish First Aid Awards 2018 ►

Scottish First Aid Awards 2018

Scottish Health Awards 2018Scottish Health Awards 2018 ►

Scottish Health Awards 2018

Community Responder Award - UK Heart Safe Awards 2018Community Responder Award - UK Heart Safe Awards 2018 ►

Community Responder Award - UK Heart Safe Awards 2018

Provost's Awards 2018Provost's Awards 2018 ►

Provost's Awards 2018

Death of Retired USAR Dog MitchDeath of Retired USAR Dog Mitch ►

Death of Retired USAR Dog Mitch

Community Responder Award Nomination - UK HeartSafe AwardsCommunity Responder Award Nomination - UK HeartSafe Awards ►

Community Responder Award Nomination - UK HeartSafe Awards

Another Busy Week!Another Busy Week! ►

Another Busy Week!

William Charles Barrington MBEWilliam Charles Barrington MBE ►

William Charles Barrington MBE

Nikola's 3 Lochs Challenge!Nikola's 3 Lochs Challenge! ►

Nikola's 3 Lochs Challenge!

Severe Weather ResponseSevere Weather Response ►

Severe Weather Response

The Kennel Club Friends for LifeThe Kennel Club Friends for Life ►

The Kennel Club Friends for Life

Vote for USAR dog TazVote for USAR dog Taz ►

Vote for USAR dog Taz

Trossachs SAR collect a new Toyota Hilux from Arnold Clark!Trossachs SAR collect a new Toyota Hilux from Arnold Clark! ►

Trossachs SAR collect a new Toyota Hilux from Arnold Clark!

Trossachs Search and Rescue Team win Not for Profit Organisation of the Year at the UK Heart Safe Awards 2017UK Heart Safe Awards 2017 ►

UK Heart Safe Awards 2017

Team Training - Saturday 5 August 2017Team Training - Saturday 5 August 2017 ►

Team Training - Saturday 5 August 2017

Trainee USAR dog TaraTrainee USAR dog Tara ►

Trainee USAR dog Tara

Award Nominations for Trossachs SARAward Nominations for Trossachs SAR ►

Award Nominations for Trossachs SAR

Trossachs SAR visit Helimed 76Helimed 76 Visit ►

Helimed 76 Visit

A marathon to save lives!A marathon to save lives! ►

A marathon to save lives!

Stuart's Outer Hebrides CycleStuart and Elaine's Outer Hebrides Cycle ►

Stuart and Elaine's Outer Hebrides Cycle

H.M. Passport Office, Glasgow DonationH.M. Passport Office, Glasgow Donation ►

H.M. Passport Office, Glasgow Donation

Glengoyne Distillery - "at the heart of our community."CPR and AED awareness for staff at Glengoyne Distillery ►

CPR and AED awareness for staff at Glengoyne Distillery

Mains Farm Wigwams - Sea King VisitMains Farm Wigwams - Sea King Visit ►

Mains Farm Wigwams - Sea King Visit

Glengoyne Distillery - At the Heart of its CommunityGlengoyne - Not just uisge beatha ►

Glengoyne Distillery - At the Heart of the Community

7 new public access defibs7 new public access defibs ►

7 public access defibs

Mitch in the MovieMitch in the Movie ►

Mitch in the Movie

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