‘Working together to enrich lives.’

Andy's Heroic Hobby

A Pool Lifeguard at Hoyland Leisure Centre has joined Mountain Rescue


Andy Bassinder, 23, from Grimethorpe, has become a Team Member at Woodhead Mountain Rescue.

The Mountain Rescue team provides assistance to people in rural areas, 24 hours a day throughout the year. They work alongside the other emergency services and can often be the first on scene.

Woodhead Mountain Rescue primarily covers the Pennines and the Peak District. The team can also provide aid to other teams in rest of England and Wales.

Andy decided to volunteer after witnessing Mountain Rescue’s hard work first-hand.

He said: “When I was completing the Three Peaks Challenge a few years ago, Mountain Rescue arrived to help someone else that had gotten hurt. I really wanted to help – which put the thought of applying in my head.

“I saw an advert on social media a few months ago and decided to apply. After my interview I had a hill assessment, which involved a map and a compass in the countryside for 3 hours!”

Training for new team members is divided into two parts and can last up to 12 months.

Andy will be completing the first part of his training at the end of this month. He is currently balancing his training, based in Woodhead, around his job as a Pool Lifeguard at Hoyland Leisure Centre.

“I’ve learnt so much already. I’ve already been out on training, which involved locating bodies – don’t worry they were just for training purposes. It was very exciting but nerve wrecking at the same time.”

Andy’s aim is to join Woodhead Mountain Rescue’s Water Team, which would involve water rescues and require advanced training. He said that his current experience as a Pool Lifeguard would give him an advantage.

He said: “Being a Lifeguard gave me an advantage to the training – not only my first aid skills, but teamwork skills too.”

Jon Mccool, Facility Manager at Hoyland Leisure Centre, is proud of Andy’s decision to branch out.

He said: “I’m pleased to see that Andy has taken up such a responsible role. Especially a voluntary one – it really shows his maturity.

“I’m very proud to see a Lifeguard from Hoyland Leisure Centre is willing to give up his free time to help the Mountain Rescue Service.”
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