The Westmorland Gazette has launched a new campaign, Readers to the Rescue, to raise £40,000 for Kendal Mountain Rescue Team to buy a state-of-the-art vehicle to act as a 'mobile base'. This would allow better communications and potentially save lives in the fells. Here Richard Warren, chairman of the Lake District Search and Mountain Rescue Association, urges readers to back the campaign

"WITHIN the Lake District we have 10 mountain rescue teams and two specialist teams that deal with around 500 calls for help each year.

It costs on average about £50,000 to keep our volunteer teams operating, all achieved through voluntary donations.

The Kendal team has a number of vehicles but their current control vehicle was damaged while rescuing during the Storm Desmond floods and hence the need to replace it.

Having a modern and reliable 4x4 control vehicle is absolutely essential for those rescues where being central to where team members are deployed can make a massive difference.

Examples would be the long duration searches or attending major incidents similar to the Grayrigg train crash or extreme weather incidents such as Storm Desmond in December 2015.

As regional chairman I fully support these initiatives to improve team capabilities in what is a growing demand for mountain rescue response across our county."