For the majority of the many thousands of visitors who flock there, the Lake District is a place of rest and relaxation, a retreat from daily life where you can soak in the tranquil beauty of one of the UK’s great upland landscapes.
Not so the organisers and participants of the Lakeland Trails fell races. From Helvellyn to Coniston, Lakeland Trails organises races for all ages and abilities set amidst the stunning scenery of the Lake District National Park. As they put it, their business is ‘inspiring races in beautiful places.’
But organising and running such popular events, which see competitors race across many miles of open countryside, is not easy. Renowned for how well marshalled the races are and the fun, carnival atmosphere, the Lakeland Trails team has to work hard on planning and coordination, both to create an unforgettable experience and ensure safety.
So when Lakeland Trails management decided that their existing two way radio network was no longer providing the quality of communication required across the remote upland race routes, they contacted Brentwood for assistance.
Providing reliable communications for race marshalls, first aiders and coordinators posed two significant challenges – the distances involved and the rugged, mountainous terrain. Distance alone is relatively simple to overcome, but combined with the obstacles to radio signals presented by steep hillsides and valleys, you have to choose technology carefully.
Another factor was portability. Like the race participants, marshals and medical staff have to be able to cover the distances involved, and would not want to be weighed down by heavy handheld radios.