Search and Rescue Birthday Honours List 2015

The Queen honoured 1163 people on her birthday this year, including 5 notable people involved in Search and Rescue.

The Queen honoured 1163 people on her birthday this year, including 5 notable people involved in Search and Rescue.

Each year on New Years Day and the Queen’s Official Birthday, the honours list celebrates and awards people who have made achievements in public life or committed themselves to serving and helping Britain.

Openhouse noted that of the 1163 people there were 5 notable persons whose services to Search and Rescue have been awarded with MBEs (Members of the Order of the British Empire) and a BEM (Medallist of the Order of the British Empire).

Paul Anthony Arnill MBE

For services to Cambridgeshire Search and Rescue and to the community in Tilney,


Paul Anthony Arnill, from Doddington has been at the forefront of the search and rescue field since forming Essex Search and Rescue back in 2001, but it was his work with Cambridge Constabulary and the formation of the countywide Lowland Search and Rescue Team, charity and community work that earned him the MBE.

After 4 years, planning and executing over 95 searches, Paul moved to Cambridgeshire to develop a new countywide LSRT to help the Cambridge Constabulary in their searches for vulnerable missing persons.

He said: “In 2004, I was approached by Cambridgeshire constabulary with the idea of setting up a search and rescue team in the county.

“After two years of meetings, endless administration and single handedly training suitable applicants, the team went live in 2006.

“During the following eight years I developed the team into the most successful search team in the country.”

Arnill was also praised for the support he has given to both The Bridge for Heroes, a charity that helps ex-service members suffering with PTSD, and his work with Tilney Parish Council, where for 7 years he helped them sort out their financial problems.

John Michael Hulse MBE

For services to Mountain Rescue in Wales, England and Northern Ireland.

John Michael Hulse from Conwy in Wales has been rewarded with an MBE for his services to Ogwen Valley Mountain Rescue Organisation.

Since his very first rescue 43 years ago, John has continued to work in the search and rescue field, and is currently aiding the handover from RAF to the new Bristow helicopters.

His teammate Chris Lloyd, also of Ogwen Valley Mountain Rescue, told the press: “I am thrilled that John has this award. It is very well deserved.”

Dr Geoffrey William Bowen MBE

For services to the Langdale Ambleside Mountain Rescue Team, Cumbria

Another innovator in the field of Search and Rescue, Dr. Geoffrey Bowen earned himself an MBE for his years as an Ambleside GP and efforts volunteering with the Ambleside Fell Rescue Team.

Many in Ambleside are hugely thankful for the many years of service Geoffrey gave as a GP but he may be even more well remembered for the innovation he showed in the field of Search and Rescue.

Geoffrey is a founding member of the Langdale and Ambleside Mountain Rescue Team, which began after he had spent 5 years volunteering for Ambleside Fell Rescue Team. His influence and hard work have been vital to saving the lives of people on the fells, he created new kit and medical techniques that have since been adopted by other search and rescue teams around the country

Stephen Hilditch MBE

For services to Mountain Rescue in the Peak District and to Scouting in Derbyshire

The next MBE was given to a man who has given nearly 5 decades of his life to mountain rescue, and is still continuing to work alongside the life saving team.

Steve Hilditch was the team leader of Derby Mountain Rescue for nearly 33 years, it was only recently that he stepped down from the role, but he continues to help the team with their rescues.

Steve spoke about his time with the team:

“I first got involved through Scouting and it was following the tragedy of the Four Inns Walk in north Derbyshire in 1964, when three Scouts died, that a dedicated mountain rescue team was formed, run initially by Scouts.

“I joined a couple of years later and it is one of the few voluntary services which has no paid employees.”

In the last 15 years, it is thought that Mountain Rescue in the Peak District has been called into action for over 500 emergencies.

Michael Derek Warrilow BEM

For services to the community in Stoke-onTrent.

(Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire)

The only search and rescue winner of the BEM on this years honours list, Michael Derek Warrilow, has worked for Staffordshire Fire and Rescue for 37 years. The ceremony also recognised the work he did for a family from Bentilee whose house was devastated by a fire.

Michael, who is currently working as a community safety officer, told the Stoke Sentinel about the moment he found out about the award:

”When I received the letter, I was gobsmacked, It was totally unexpected. Things like this don’t usually happen to normal people. It is an honour just to have been nominated, let alone considered and awarded it.”

Here at Openhouse we would like to congratulate these 5 dedicated figures of search and rescue and thank them for their incredible service to the United Kingdom.