Minister Simon Harris Opens New Red Cross Base

Minister Simon Harris handed over Donard Former Garda Station to Glen of
Imaal  Mountain Rescue Team and Baltinglass Irish Red Cross.
Simon Harris,  Minister of State with special responsibility for the
Office of Public Works (OPW) on 4 December 2015 officially
handed over the keys of the former Garda Station in Donard to the
Glen of Imaal Red Cross Mountain Rescue Team and Baltinglass Irish Red Cross.

Speaking at the handover, the Minister said, “I am delighted to be here in Donard, to hand over a former Garda Station to the local community. Since 2013, eighteen former stations have been handed over to communities the length and breadth of the country.  Donard as we all know, is an excellent base for hillwalking enthusiasts and I am pleased that this former station can be put to good use by these wonderful voluntary organisations”.

Among the following services to be provided from this Red Cross Centre will be first-aid and defibrillator training, services for local community events, a mountain rescue command post and a unified location for all emergency responders during rescue operations.

Speaking in Donard, Paul Ashmore, Chairman of the Glen of Imaal Mountain Rescue Team said “We at the Red Cross are excited to be moving into our sub base in Donard, Co. Wicklow. We are also delighted to be part sharing it with another Red Cross team. This base will facilitate
with the call outs that we receive on Lugnaqullia and other mountains in the west of Wicklow. It will also store essential equipment needed by personnel reacting to call outs and for some of our training that is continuous and on going. This is a great day for the Red Cross and the Glen of Imaal Team”.

Hannah Cuddy of Baltinglass Red Cross continued “After some years of moving between Blessington and Baltinglass, the members of the Branch are now excited to be moving to the former Garda Station in Donard
which will be used in conjunction with the Glen of Imaal Red Cross Mountain Rescue Team both as a training centre for themselves and to provide First Aid training for local groups. We are extremely grateful to the OPW for their generosity in providing us with this base.

Minister Harris concluded by wishing the community well “We all appreciate the excellent voluntary service the members of these organisations provide, both in times of emergency and in a community setting and I have no doubt excellent use will be made of the facilities
here”.Glen team GBW