A permanent base for the South East Mountain Rescue Association was officially opened in Clonmel on Saturday.
The Cathaoirleach of Tipperary County Council Roger Kennedy officiated at the event which also saw John O’Leary the Mayor of Waterford City and County in attendance.
Deputy Mattie McGrath, Cllr Marie Murphy, Sara Bourke, STDC, and garda, army and coast guard representatives also attended.
Families and friends of past and present SEMRA members and relatives of casualties that lost their lives on the hills including relatives of victims of the 1976 aeroplane crash in the Galtee Mountains that led to the formation of SEMRA were present.
Three men died in the crash on September 20th 1976. Several walking clubs and Civil Defence groups were also represented on Saturday.
The new building is located beside the Tipperary Fire Service in Clonmel.
Tipperary County Council donated the site and assisted with architects fees, a €200,000 grant from the Leader programme via the South Tipperary Development Company was supplemented by donations to cover the total cost of €281,000.
The building incorporates storage space, training rooms, operations room, kitchenette and shower facilities will be added in the future.
SEMRA has 56 volunteer members plus 5 search dogs. SEMRA was founded in 1977 and it’s new mobile incident control unit is dedicated to Garry Farrelly who is credited with putting a proper structure on the organisation.
SEMRA’s Mike Power officially launched SEMRA’s annual fundraiser the Long Way Round to be held on Saturday November 26th, and tickets are now on sale.