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Last Updated: Tuesday, 18 November, 2003, 11:17 GMT
Call for more mountain rescue cash
Mountain rescue team
There are a dozen rescue teams in the Lake District
Mountain rescuers in Cumbria have called for more money after services in neighbouring Scotland received massive cash increases.

The Scottish Executive is to increase mountain rescue funding to 400,000 a year. Teams in Scotland are also getting an extra 300,000 of public money to upgrade radio equipment.

But the Langdale and Ambleside Mountain Rescue Team - Britain's busiest - says more cash is needed to sustain services in Cumbria.

The 35-strong Lake District team, run entirely by volunteers, relies on public donations to survive.

It has annual operating costs of about 50,000 and is currently trying to raise money to move out of its 300-year-old accommodation in the village of Low Fold in Ambleside.

Public regard

The team deal with about 100 emergencies a year.

Team leader Nick Verral said: "We are very envious and don't really know how they have managed to do this in Scotland.

"We are not angry at the situation, but we do wish there was a higher public regard for the service we provide.

"We are one of 12 teams in the Lake District and we have carried out more than 70 rescues, equating to 2,800 man-hours.

"It would be nice to have the kind of funding they have in Scotland, instead of having to go around rattling tins.

"I don't think the government recognises the service that we provide."

In 2002 there were 337 incidents on the Cumbrian fells.

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