Congratulations to Phil O”Brien, Team Leader of Bowland Pennine MRT on being made a Member of the British Empire in the Queen”s Birthday Honours List

We have the greatest of pleasures in extending our warmest congratulations to long standing team friend and fellow mountain rescue colleague Phil O’Brien, current Team Leader of Bowland Pennine MRT, who has been made a Member of the British Empire in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List.

Phil O’Brien came to mountain rescue from a background in the Scout Association and has been a member of the Bowland Pennine Mountain Rescue Team since 1986, and has held the position of Team Leader since 2005.

Phil, aged 54years old, and originally from South Wales has been a long term resident of Preston, (An Honorary Lancastrian !) and is a keen walker and former climber.

He is the Team Leader of over forty volunteers in the Bowland Pennine MRT, which covers the Bowland Fells and a large area stretching to the Cumbrian boundary, the Lancashire coast, and the West and South Pennines.

He received his MBE for services to the Bowland Pennine Mountain Rescue Team.


He said: “I’m honoured but we are part of a team and you can’t do anything without the full team.”

He added the team has taken part in hundreds of rescues over the years and he has been on most of them.


“The ones I find most memorable are the searches for missing people rather than the dashes on to the hills to help crashed paragliders and such callouts.

“When you find the people, I find that particularly rewarding.”

We also extend congratulations to Ian Hurst, President of Buxton Mountain Rescue Team who was also appointed an MBE, for services to mountain rescue in Derbyshire, and to Keith Birkitt of the Buxton Mountain Rescue Team who gained a British Empire Medal for his voluntary service to the team.