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Meet the Team at MRS Training & Rescue Knottingley

MRS Training & Rescue Centre in Knottingley, Yorkshire

One area which truly differentiates us is the experience of our operators on site.  They have the real-life skills and expertise of working in hazardous environments.  Then, becoming an employee with MRS they undertake a lengthy induction and training programme which is constantly reviewed and enhanced through their careers.  People are our biggest investment and our greatest asset.

All those who join our team undertake an induction and training programme – which is constantly reviewed and enhanced throughout their careers with MRS Training & Rescue. People are our great asset, and what we invest the most in.

MRS Training & Rescue Knottingley

MRS Training & Rescue has provided rescue services in Yorkshire for over 100 years. Today, our training centre is located in Knottingley – and from this location we provide a wide range of rescue services and training courses.

Our Knottingley training centre features state-of-the-art training facilities – including confined space training tunnels, a GWO approved working at height rig and COVID-19 safe classrooms.

Meet the Team at Knottingley

Aiden Jones – MRS Training & Rescue Trainer & Rescue OperativeAiden Jones – Trainer & Rescue Operative

At 20 years old, Aiden wanted to join us to widen his horizon and take on a completely new challenge. With no former experience, Aiden has brought with him a breath of fresh air to the team and it was his willingness to take this challenge that allowed us to see his potential. Having commenced employment with MRS in September 2020, he has significantly progressed through all the TAQA, AET & Rescue Worker awards required to be a qualified Rescue Operative, Trainer & Assessor. Aiden wants to specialise in Confined Spaces and Working at Height and a progression plan has been developed to help him achieve his ambitions. His willingness to succeed and progress position him ideally for the future. He has gained invaluable experience working alongside some of the more experienced staff whilst providing emergency on-site confined space rescue cover to a local power station during their major outage.

Ryan Jackson – MRS Training & Rescue Trainer & Rescue OperativeRyan Jackson – Trainer & Rescue Operative

Ryan joined MRS in August 2020 and although he had no prior experience of health and safety, he came from a customer facing position where he worked for a well-known food chain. This has brought an air of confidence when dealing with people which will put him in good stead going forward. He has significantly progressed through all the TAQA, AET & Rescue Worker awards required to be a qualified Rescue Operative, Trainer & Assessor. He accepts the challenges put in front of him and does the task to the very best of his abilities. He has gained invaluable experience working alongside some of the more experienced staff whilst providing emergency on-site confined space rescue cover to a local power station during their major outage.


Tori Jennings – MRS Training & Rescue Trainer & Rescue OperativeTori Jennings – Trainer & Rescue Operative

Victoria, known to us all as Tori, brings with her new dynamic when dealing with people, both staff and customers alike. She gained her experience working with a well know travel operator, working internationally as part of her job role. Having commenced employment with MRS in September 2020, she has significantly progressed through all the TAQA, AET & Rescue Worker awards required to be a qualified Rescue Operative, Trainer & Assessor. She has gained invaluable experience working alongside some of the more experienced staff whilst providing emergency on-site confined space rescue cover to a local power station during their major outage. This has allowed Tori to have the confidence to tutor a confined space course under the direct observation of her allocated mentor.

Alex Robinson – MRS Training & Rescue  Trainer & Rescue OperativeAlex Robinson – Trainer & Rescue Operative

Alex started at MRS in July 2020 after serving as an associate rescue worker for us where we would utilise his skills at peak times. Having already been trained by us in the core skills required to be a rescue operative, he has now progressed through all the TAQA, AET & Rescue Worker awards required to be a qualified Rescue Operative, Trainer & Assessor. Having a head for heights, he has a keen interest in working at height and confined spaces and as a result, we will continue with his progression over the coming months in these roles to ensure he has a wide knowledge of the subjects prior to delivering training on these topics.


Craig McNaughton – MRS Training & Rescue Team Leader, Trainer & Rescue OperativeCraig McNaughton – Team Leader, Trainer & Rescue Operative

Craig is one of our more experienced members of staff and is a widely recognised and respected member of the team. He is the go-to person for many aspects of the business and as a result, is a Team Leader. He takes on the day-to-day aspects of the site and works closely with the Assistant Manager to ensure the site is operating efficiently and safely. Craig joined MRS from a manufacturing background where he held managerial responsibilities for H&S so is ideally placed to ensure compliance with legal & company policies. Whilst working with MRS, Craig has undertaken many training courses of differing degree of complexity from manual handling, first aid, confined space and IOSH Managing Safely. He has been able to mix knowledge with experience gained over the years and has been involved in many sectors such as manufacturing, power generation, nuclear, utilities, rail, mining, construction and more…

Derek Wilson – Trainer & Rescue Operative

Derek comes with a wealth of knowledge initially joining in 1982. He has been involved in many rescue scenarios over the years and was instrumental in applying H&S regulations into our training courses particularly when it comes to confined spaces. Since the introduction in 1997 of the confined space regulations, Derek has been involved in providing risk assessments and methods of work including the provision of rescue plans to all types of industry. He is actively involved in training people to work safely in these areas and has educated several thousand delegates to date. He is involved in the EBT council and is the ‘Guru’ when it comes to all thing relating to breathing apparatus.

Derek Spears – Trainer & Rescue Operative

Having joined MRS in 2005, Derek has a wide range of knowledge on many H&S related disciplines. He has a vast portfolio of training courses to offer and has a background in heavy machinery. Derek’s unique sense of humour is a real hit with his audiences and can discuss the subject matter at all levels. He specialises in working at height and can provide on-site consultancy and reports for those who have high risk areas. Derek also works on special projects where is knowledge and experience can be put to good use.

Jeff Taylor – MRS Training & Rescue Trainer & Rescue OperativeJeff Taylor – Trainer & Rescue Operative

Jeff is our longest serving Trainer & Rescue Operative. Having worked in the mines as a young adult, Jeff joined MRS in 2001 quickly establishing himself as an all-rounder. A vast amount of knowledge and experience, Jeff is our ‘tech’ guy and is always happy to help. Whilst working with MRS, Jeff has undertaken many training courses of differing degree of complexity from first aid, CCNSG and confined spaces for both operatives and management. He has been able to mix knowledge with experience gained over the years and has been involved in many sectors such as manufacturing, power generation, nuclear, utilities, rail, mining, construction and more…where he is heavily involved with the identification and categorisation of confined spaces utilising our MRS App whilst on a company’s site

Jason Barstow – MRS Training & Rescue Trainer & Rescue OperativeJason Barstow – Trainer & Rescue Operative

Jason joined the company in 2017 and as well as being a qualified IOSH and City and Guilds instructor, has a wealth of knowledge of both first aid and rescue. In his spare time, he also works as a First Responder in the Private Ambulance Service, which has given him further hands on first aid experience working alongside Paramedics. And finds time to also provide support for TacSAR (the Tactical Search and Recovery Specialist Team covering the Yorkshire region), who use trained dogs on high profile missing people searches. He also volunteers for the Yorkshire Lowland Search and Rescue and has been involved in assisting with humanitarian support.

Declan Rogers – MRS Training & Rescue Trainer & Rescue OperativeDeclan Rogers – Trainer & Rescue Operative

Having worked as a Navigational Officer in the Merchant Navy for 6 years, Declan joined MRS Training & Rescue in 2018, bringing a wealth of experience. In the Navy, Declan led confined space evacuations and firefighting teams on board and has been able to transfer those skills to his new role. Whilst at MRS, he has delivered a wide range of training and provided rescue cover around the UK and world, including on an offshore oil rig in Ghana.


Neil Fowkes – MRS Training & Rescue Assistant Manager Neil Fowkes – Assistant Manager

With over 30 years’ experience as a Safety Officer and Mechanical Engineer, Neil joined MRS Training & Rescue in 2017 as Assistant Manager. An experienced trainer of Working at Height, Confined Space and First Aid, Neil also has a wealth of knowledge on confined space rescue and recovery offshore in the oil and gas and mining industries.

Billy Gundry – MRS Training & Rescue Operations ManagerBilly Gundry – Operations Manager

Billy was introduced to mining at the age of 16, completing 10 years as a miner before joining the Mines Rescue Service in 1991. He progressed from this to Brigadesman, then Sub-officer, Officer, Deputy Manager, and he is now Operations Manager at Knottingley, a position he has held since 2015. 
During his career, Billy has responded and been involved in many underground incidents including falls of ground, fires, explosions, inrushes and unfortunately, has dealt with many fatalities. Over the years, he has worked with many civil engineering companies including Balfour Beatty, Skanska, Costain, BAM Nuttall, Strabag and more….
Billy is a registered H&S professional having gained his NEBOSH diploma and subsequently, a business diploma.

Andrea Lowe – MRS Training & Rescue  Office ManagerAndrea Lowe – Office Manager

Having joined MRS in 2006, Andrea and her team are the hub of the centre and she loves the fact that her job is so varied and no two days are ever the same. Responsible for the day-to-day running of the busy admin office, Andrea is often the first point of contact for many customers and suppliers. Always a cheery friendly voice at the end of the phone, she arranges all training courses and resources, responds to queries and enquiries, deals with invoices and payments, keeps track of office supplies, arranges travel and keeps everyone stocked up with tea and coffee supplies too!

Naomi Townsend – MRS Training & Rescue Office AdministratorNaomi Townsend – Office Administrator

Naomi joined us in 2016 and assists in the day-to-day administration of courses and bookings. She loves all things admin, and like Andrea, is super organised. A friendly and popular member of the team, she responds to phone and email enquiries, books courses for customers, processes certificates and the necessary paperwork too. She loves the fact that her job is different every day and that she is able to learn so much about health and safety in the workplace, as well as the products, services and courses we offer. She’s also passionate about proof reading, is excellent at it and often helps the HQ team to ensure all our writing is clear and error free.

Jade Lea – Cleaner

Jade joined our team in December 2020 and plays a principal role in ensuring our centre is Covid safe.   Jade loves to spend her free time with her family and enjoys walking and riding her bike. 

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