Langdale Team - Early days

"...until the last few years at The Old Hotel when the Langdale Mountain Rescue Team came in.

I. When was that, what date?

R. Well, off hand, I would say, about five years before we retired, maybe about 1965/66.

The chief instigators of this, and they live up at the Old Golf House, on Loughrigg, was Bryan Marsh and Pete Deeley. And Frank Davies was brought into it and Pete Greenall. Oh dear... there were about half a dozen. And they came up to the Old Hotel and we had a little get together, a meeting, a discussion about the whole thing and I welcomed this because then we could be of great use when there were no climbers about.

But the rescues were done by climbers who knew how to handle everything. They knew all about tensions and belaying on a crag and if you'd to lower a stretcher with a body on - well I'd be barrow boy and I'd be bringing it down. I had confidence in the people that were lowering me from above because I knew that they were competent climbers. And that they would be using their belays correctly.

Its quite amusing thinking of this really because its amazing how some local people came into this. There was Tickle or Cecil Otway, the St John's Ambulance man who was always a great sight to come down to, he'd be there with the ambulance at The Old (Hotel), and as soon as you'd got down you handed over and Cecil Otway was in charge then. And he was always a tower of strength, was Cecil Otway. We knew him as Tickle Otway.

And there was for years Dr Lancaster who was absolutely marvellous person, he was loved by everyone. He was this kind of gentleman was Dr Lancaster. Coming down from the crag with the stretcher. In the early days he would walk up as far as he could to meet us so he could look at the injured person and he would greet us by saying, "Do you mind if I look at him?". He was a wonderful person was Lanky. And you'd have the stretcher down for Dr Lancaster to look at the person. Great fellow. "

From the Ambleside Oral History Group archive