The Royal Air Force Mountain Rescue Association


The RAF Mountain Rescue Association (MRA) was formed in 1993 following the 50th anniversary celebrations of the formation of the RAF Mountain Rescue Service (MRS) which were held at Bangor University. Initially formed on semi-formal lines we do have a written constitution which is shown below and the association is managed by a small committee of dedicated volunteers whose details are shown on the Contact Us page, this is where you need to go if you want to join the MRA.

Since 1993 the association has met the aims of its constitution in the following ways:-

1.  Holding reunions whenever there has been a requirement to do so, this has been done annually by the Association, whilst also supporting and advertising the numerous regional reunions of MRS MRTs.

2.  Donating to the MRS teams copies of both Flt Lt Graham’s medals, he was awarded the first MBE for services to Mountain Rescue and copies of FS Johnnie Lees’ George Medal.

3.  Erecting and dedicating a memorial to Flt Lt Graham at Carlisle cathedral.

4.  Erecting and dedicating a memorial to the 12 Troops who have died whilst on MRS duty, this is in the Crypt Chapel of St. Clement Danes church in The Strand, London.

5.  Organising and executing a charity walk aka “The Wee Walk” from Lands End to John O’Groats via the peaks of many of the highest mountains in the UK.

6.  Representing the MRS at the Cenotaph Parade in Whitehall every Remembrance Sunday with a small reunion the preceding evening.

7.  Digitizing as many of the historical MRS documents as possible, including the Team diaries so that they are available on this website for members to read.

8.  Producing an annual Journal, “On the Hill” each Autumn to record the activities of the MRS past and present; this is supplemented by a Spring Newsletter.

9.  Creating a Database of all current and past members of the MRS, this is only available to view on this website in the members area i.e. you must be logged-in.

10.  Commissioning a painting to commemorate the successful climb of Everest’s North Ridge by the MRS in 2001.

11.  Planting a tree at the National Arboretum “As a tribute to all MRS Troops who served in this country and overseas as part of the RAF mountain Rescue Service”.

12.  Creating and maintaining this website for the benefit of all Troops past and present.

13. Commissioning 3 Standards, one held in England, Wales and Scotland, for use at Reunions, funerals etc. NB This is NOT a colour as awarded to Squadrons and Units.

14. Creating and supporting an extensive on-line collection of photos of MRS activities from 1943

We have not always got everything right and the decision to protect long term income by rescinding Life Membership for the over 65s sadly resulted in a number of members resigning, this was very much regretted.

New members of the committee are always welcome, to volunteer please contact any member of the committee.


The RAF Mountain Rescue Association was formed in September 1993 and has the endorsement of the Air Force Board



Version 10 dated 21st February 2020




  1. The Association shall be called the RAF Mountain Rescue Association (RAFMRA)


  1. The objects of the Association shall be to:


a. Maintain a contact with and foster an interest in the RAF Mountain Rescue Service (RAFMRS), its history and achievements


b. Continue the comradeship that members found in it


c. Compile a register of members of the Service


d. Encourage, and where appropriate arrange, reunions and offer other events


e. Record, and where appropriate publish, material about the Service past and present


f. Support the continuance of the RAF Mountain Rescue Service




  1. The full membership of the Association shall consist of those who are either past or present members the RAFMRS and who pay an annual subscription. The Association may appoint as an associate member a person not qualifying for full membership but who has been associated with and given assistance to the MRS and/or a particular team past or present. Such a member will normally pay an annual subscription and not be eligible to vote at AGM’s. However, the Association may agree to waive the subscription where the person’s contribution has been significant in which case associate membership would be for life.  Proposals and consideration of appointment to associate membership status can only take place with a written justification (approx 1/2 page of A4) –which must be sent to the editor of ‘On the Hill’ for inclusion in the next Journal.  The spouse of a former full member automatically qualifies for Associate membership.


  1. The Association may make the following honorary appointments:


a. A Patron, who holds office for an indefinite period.


b. From the full membership an Honorary President, holding office for three years, in recognition of significant past service.


c. Honorary Members who have made an outstanding contribution to the RAFMRS.


Candidates for these appointments shall be proposed and seconded by members.  When elected they will enjoy the privileges of membership but will not pay an annual subscription while in office.


Management of the Association


  1. The management of the Association and its affairs shall be vested in an Executive Committee (hereinafter called the Committee) consisting of the following: a Chairman, a Treasurer, a Membership Secretary, an ‘On the Hill’ Editor, a Welfare Co-ordinator, a Website Manager, a Reunion Co-ordinator, and an ex-officio member of the MRS as nominated by OC MRS with up to 2 other persons each of whom may be given a designation.  Deputies may be appointed to any of these positions where, in the opinion of the committee, this is in the best interests of the association.  The above shall be appointed by members of the Association and hold office until, resignation or postal /e-mail or election of a successor.  In the event of any post becoming vacant the Committee shall have delegated powers of election, subject to the approval of the membership, having been notified by e-mail or website notice or in writing at the earliest opportunity.  In addition, each existing RAF Mountain Rescue Team shall be invited to nominate a representative for liaison with the Committee.  Such representatives shall be regarded as the Association’s link with individual teams. The Committee shall, on appropriate matters, keep in touch with the competent staff officers concerned with the administration of the RAFMRS.


  1. A quorum for the Committee shall be 4. Telephone or e-mail meetings shall be deemed acceptable. The Website Editor shall keep a record of proceedings of such meetings and of action taken ex-committee, when members of the Committee are consulted about individual matters.


  1. The Committee shall have powers to regulate the admission of new members of the Association, which shall be based on the acceptance of a statement regarding membership of the RAFMRS.


  1. There shall be no entrance fee, but the Committee shall determine the rate of annual subscriptions, the sum of which shall be designed to meet the costs of administration and organisation including publications. The name of any member not paying their annual subscription may be removed from the membership list after one year, though in the case of a serving member, the Committee shall have regard to the exigencies of the Service.  Reinstatement may be allowed later at the discretion of the Committee in any case.


  1. Within the limits of the objectives set out above, the Committee shall decide the policies of the Association but being always accountable to the Association.


  1. The committee’s expenditure is limited to £500 in respect of any one item.


Meetings of the Association


  1. A General Meeting of the Association can be held at the same time as a national reunion of members, but annual general meetings will not normally be held. Between meetings the Committee shall conduct a policy of informing, seeking feedback[1] and, where appropriate, approval from the membership. A General Meeting shall consider such matters as are put to it by the Committee or members in relation to the management of the Association as outlined below.  The Chairman shall give notice of such meeting to every paid-up member.  Matters raised by members are to be submitted to the Chairman at least two weeks before the meeting and will be placed on the agenda in the order in which they are received.


  1. For voting purposes at meetings, a quorum shall consist of 10% of the paid up membership. However, where in the opinion of the committee any proposal is fundamental to the aims of the association and the committee deems that the membership is insufficiently represented they may refer the final decision on the proposal to a full membership ballot. Proxy voting is allowed.



  1. The Chairman or, in his absence, a delegated member of the Committee shall chair a General Meeting.


  1. Any meeting shall also consider the election of Honorary Officers, the receipt of their reports and in the case of the Treasurer, his statements on the income and expenditure of the Association since the previous meeting, and any other competent business.


  1. An Extraordinary General Meeting may be called by the Committee at any time on receiving a request in writing to that effect signed by any 20 members regarding an urgent matter which they believe requires consideration, the Committee may also call an EGM where they feel it is in the best interests of the Association. Such a meeting shall be competent to deal only with the business for which it has been called.




  1. Any proposed alterations to this constitution shall be put to members either at a meeting, e-mail, by notice on the website, in On the Hill, in a Newsletter or in a personal letter. Acceptance will be subject to either a vote in favour achieved by a simple majority or if notified by notice where less than 50% of the membership objects.


General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR)


  1. The Association qualifies for exemption from the GDPR. This exemption to the Act is conditional on the continued confidentiality of data stored i.e. names addresses and all the personal details.  All such data held by committee members is not to be released to any third parties without the prior written approval of the subject.


Minor revisions 11.11.2021 BJC

32 thoughts on “The Royal Air Force Mountain Rescue Association

  1. Hi Troops,

    Walter Elliot, Glencoe passed away this summer. As many of you will know Walter and his brother Willie were founding members of Glencoe MRT. I worked with Walter in the 80s and last saw him in February last year, dropping into Achnambeithach on the way back from Skye.

    An obituary was published in the Oban Times and I approached the London Times suggesting they also publish an obituary in order Walter received a national obituary as many people who knew him from RAF MRS were scattered across the UK and beyond.

    That obituary was published and for anyone wishing a copy I can pass on a PDF file of same. I also wanted to say many thanks to RAF MRA for accepting me as a friend of the service a few years ago and for gaining access to the website this year.

    Best regards, Ian ‘Mitch’ Mitchell, Västerbotten, Sweden (LMRT friend of the team, 90s). I would like to catch up online with any LMRT troops, e.g. Bill Batson, Drew, Jim Bain, Abby, 2ba, Phil Dyer, Danny Daniels….

  2. I wish to post notification of the death of Dave Shannon.

    He died on the 6th July 2021 after a short illness in Cyprus to where he and his wife Truus had retired.
    He was in the Kinloss team in the late 50`s to early 60`s. A real character who new members were wise to be wary of, he liked to play the role of a wee Glasgow hard man, but a great troop once accepted by him. On demob he trained as a draftsman with Rolls Royce and then moved with them down to Derby. Later he moved to London, joining me in my Earls Court flat where he insisted in wearing his kilt to the pub to proclaim his Scottish identity. He then moved to Holland, where he met and married Truus, but spent most of his working life in Norway designing oil rigs. We had great times together on the hill both in the RAF and in civvy street and I, along with KMRT members of that era, mourn the passing of a good friend.

  3. I have just posted my joining application plus subs. I have sent a selection of photographs of the MRT St Athan during 1953-1956 also some pages of information re this period. I would appreciate if there exists a list of team members. All best wishes John “WALLY” Waud St Athen MRT during 1953-56.

  4. Pleased to re-join after some considerable time- work load after demob, marriage and Police service 30yrs. + plus Civil Service,retirement brings much more activities and for 49 yrs I was a member of the Barry Male Voice Choir (lots of trips Abroad) Have always retained the love of the Mountains. Visited the old stamping ground some years ago in the Brecon Beacons. At the age of 86yrs its a bit difficult now lads “Anno Domini” and all that. I still have happy memories of St Athan MRT when I was a member in 1953 to 1956.

  5. I have just signed up for the RAF Mountain Rescue Association after starting to do a blot of research for a book that i am writing about my life.
    I joint RAF Valley in January 1960 and was demobbed in September 1961.
    Looking at the list of names i can recognise quite a few. J R Lees was in charge of the section at the time and after his retirement R A (Tony) Bennett took over. Members of the team where R J (Hovis) Brown permeant staff driver, K C Gordon, Jim Kinnis who came from Kircaldy in Scotland and who’s wedding to a girl from Bethesda i went to in Bangor probably in 1962 or 1963. KC Gordon was also there.
    I have pictures which i will be posting in due course.
    (Pharoeh) R R Wilson Dec 2020

  6. Hi Alex, thanks for your comments. You spotted a glitch which I have since put right. In the transfer from the previous website host we lost the ability to add comments. I have now rectified that and comments may now be added to articles. If anyone spots any more glitches please let me know at If I don’t know there is a problem I can’t correct it.

  7. The site seems to have changed since my last visit. How do I make post in the Obituary section. Any help appreciated

    Alex Morrison

  8. Hi Tony Wilmore, I was on the RAF Leeming / Linton-on-Ouse MRT from 1983-85 based at Linton until Airworks finally took over and the team returned to Leeming.

    RAF Leeming / Linton-on-Ouse MRT Reunion for 2018 will be held at:
    The Royal Oak Inn, Braithwaite, Keswick, CA12 5SY. Tel: 017687 78533
    Saturday 13 Oct 2018 We expect the set menu to be around £20 per head. Attendees will be expected to arrange own accommodation.
    Yours aye

  10. Today stunned as I hear that the film “Operation Moffat” won Best Film, Best Climbing Film, and Best Women in Adventure awards at Sheffield’s film festival this weekend.

  11. Dear Troops, don’t forget the menu choices they are on page 43 of the 2014 on the hill.
    Jim if you are monitoring Chris Shorrocks is again deputising for Yanto for the 2015 Cenotaph Parade his contact e-mail is and not as stated for deputy membership sec in OTH or the Newsletter.

    Hoppy clappy regards,


  12. We (self & wife) had the pleasure a week ago of dining with Michael Graham (and wife), son of Sqn Ldr Graham.
    Frank Card

  13. We bid a sad farewell to an old friend and troop. In 1959, a young National Service man named Malcolm Coleman was posted to RAF Harpur Hill. I could never understand the urgency of taking a young man away from his family and loved ones for a period of two to defend his country — by cutting hair! Nonetheless, here he was and he was cutting my hair. I encouraged him to join the MRT. After joining the team, Malc was inducted by the name “Sweeney” after the mad barber.

    Now Sweeney was far from being mad. He was in fact a very good man on and off the Hill. Sweeney had a great sense of humor and was always good for a laugh. In 1959, I was fortunate enough to be invited to Sweeney’s home in Northwich. We enjoyed the weekend with his Mother and Brother. It was there also that Sweeney introduced me to his girlfriend — a lovely girl — who later became his wife for line. The last time I saw Sweeney was at the Cenotaph two years ago. We had a good time rehashing old times and sharing old tales.

    It is with a heavy heart that I heard of Sweeney’s passing and extend my sympathy and condolences to his wife and entire family. All who knew Sweeney will miss him.

  14. Iv’e had a email asking if it was ok for Robert (Paddy) Bob Millen to join the association he was at Valley and other teams in the 1960/70 good mate they should be no problems first class troop Mike Wilks

  15. Does anyone know Steve Bienik? He keeps writing to me asking if I know of his grandfather who, he says, was public relations officer for Valley many years ago. Apparently he had the rank of PO (RAF or RN – I don’t know. When I write back to say NO, my email is rejected INVALID ADDRESS.

    Frank Card

  16. This years newsletter will be thinner than last years in view of the fact that OTH has a fair bit already produced, unfortunately info from the site can’t be copied as it is a protected site, but then all have access or the ability to register for access. I have already nicked a few photos from faceboook. In the new year the editing takes place you know the game and the curses that will occur, I always knew my fly swatter would come in useful one day especially for beating ones knowledge machine.

    Happy New Year.

  17. Yes John, it is the same Jim Paterson. I hadn’t seen him since our Team Leaders course until the MRS Scotland Reunion at Newtonmore this year. Apart from the advancement in years he is still the same old Jim. The Do was a great credit to the efforts of Sunshine. Several other acquaintances were rekindled after forty odd years, all in all it was a great reunion. It really is fantastic to meet people after all these years and chat with them as if time had stood still. I will send you Jim’s email address so that you can make contact.

    Web Editor

  18. Hi, Jim, I have just read an article ref,Team Leaders Course Tony Lawrence and in particular Jim Patterson well if it is the same Jim Patterson AKA “Scooby”who was in both Leeming and later Kinloss and after leaving the Service joined Lochaber Mountain Rescue Team for about 15 years and still lives in Coal Fort Bill (William) he was with me at Leeming before being posted I stayed at Leeming until Jan 1969 and Demob.Hope this is of interest Kind Regards. John.

  19. Thanks Tom, It was a great do well celebrated over a couple of nights. 150 troops were at the dinner representing every decade. As you can probably guess there were one or two ‘wee drams’ consumed and many a tale was told. I am waiting for some photographs from the official photographer before putting up an article on the occasion.


  20. Hi Jim, you are quite right it is the same Jim Morrison who was on the Team Leaders course. How have you been after all these years. I say years but we can count it in decades now, four to be precise. You are the fourth member of that course we now have contact with; Tony Lawrence and Jim Patterson seem to have disappeared from view. If you, or indeed anyone else knows of their whereabouts please pass on the information via this website. You will have seen from the site the sad passing on of “Taff Tunnah” who was our mentor on the course. He did put us through the mill but it did stand us in good stead for what lay ahead.
    Great to hear from you Jim, please keep in touch and if possible drop me the odd tale of your experiences in MR.
    Cheers the noo,


  21. Hi.Just managed to log on and am looking forward to reading some of the history and tales that will come up.Wondered if the Jim Morrison is the same person who was on the Leaders course at Leuchars with me. Cheers Jim

  22. Sorry to hear that Bob, would you be interested in a Skype conference call 061630Z i.e. GMT?

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