Calder Valley rescue team pay tribute to lifetime vice-president who was 'true gentleman'

The funeral takes place tomorrow of an "inspirational" and "dedicated" Calder Valley man.

By sarah fitton
Sunday, 24th April 2022, 5:54 pm
Updated Sunday, 24th April 2022, 6:10 pm

Robert Uttley MBE, known as Bob, was Lifetime Vice-President of Calder Valley Search and Rescue Team.

The team posted on social media: "Our thoughts are with Bob’s family, daughter Andrea and friends.

"In a celebration of his life, we would like to share some memories of Bob who will be remembered for being an inspiration to others, a true gentleman and someone who was dedicated to everything he was passionate about."

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Robert Uttley

They said Mr Uttley spent many years as a chartered accountant and financial director while also being a stalwart supporter of the community, with strong connections to various organisations in Todmorden including the choral society and St Mary’s Church Choir.

He was a keen Walsden and Todmorden cricket follower and was also Captain of Todmorden Golf Club in 1973, Club President in the early 1990s and Grounds Officer between 1974 and 1987.

The team said he joined them after his son Robert tragically died while climbing Annapurna III in the Himalayas during a whiteout in October 1983.

In 1994, Mr Uttley was made Honorary President of the rescue team, and continued in the position until 2018 when he was elected Lifetime Vice-President.

He worked tirelessly to help raise the almost £100,000 needed for the team's base - The Rescue Post and oversaw several other projects, always working hard to generate support.

When the team acquired a new control vehicle in 2018, they put Mr Uttley's name on it with the message "in recognition of his service".

He was awarded with an MBE for services to the community in the Calder Valley in the Queen's Birthday Honours List in June 2017 and was also presented with the Mountain Rescue England and Wales Long Service Certificate in 2018.

"Throughout his life, Bob was a dependable supporter, ambassador, mentor and friend to the team and truly left a positive imprint on both the team and the wider Calder Valley and his presence will be sadly missed," said the team.

Mr Uttley's funeral will be held at St Mary's Church, Todmorden, tomorrow at 1.30pm.