4×4 Response UK is a registered Charity.
4×4 Response operates at two distinct levels. Nationally it is called 4×4 Response and it acts as an umbrella organisation supporting the teams.
The National organisation is a point of contact for any national issues / questions / proposals, i.e. anything which affects all teams. It is constituted as a charity with a group of trustees elected by its members (the member teams and any individuals who have individual membership at a national level).
Regionally each team is run day-to-day autonomously and will be named regionally (e.g. Hertfordshire 4×4 Response etc.)
This is where the work happens, team members are trained within their teams, and it is the team which builds relationships within its area with user bodies such as the police and ambulance services. The team is called out by the user body.
4×4 Response does not operate its services nationally, where there is a need for a national callout, such a call out then goes from the national level to each relevant team, the teams deploy and work together.
Over the years, and across the UK there have been groups set up by volunteers owning 4x4s and offering a service to their local community. Members of these groups have used their vehicles to support the Emergency Services, Local Council Emergency Planning Departments and other volunteer organisations in times of poor weather, emergency or other times of need. Some have been active for many years, others are still forming.
In 1999, 4×4 Response was first established in Norfolk to provide local community support. One of its key aims was to promote the 4×4 Response concept across the country. Through its website and attendance at shows, information was passed and other 4×4 Rresponse specific groups were formed across the UK. In 2005, it was suggested that these links were developed into a more formal Association which could assist the development of the Volunteer 4×4 Response concept across the country. In 2006, the 4×4 Response Network was renamed Norfolk & Suffolk 4×4 Response and the simpler name was used to form a National identity.
Throughout 2006 a steering committee and several sub-committees, consisting of members from groups in Northern, Southern and Eastern England, Scotland and Wales, used the web to discuss and establish the criteria for 4×4 Response Groups across the nation.
In 2008, after considerable growth in the regions with 500 members involved in their local teams the National organisation was formalised and established as an umbrella charity.
The original concept was not lost and in 2008 moves started to put the Network on a more formal footing with a legal entity and charitable status, at that point there were seven operational groups across the country. As the organisation has become more formalised over the years, so the underlying structure has evolved. In the Autumn of 2008, 4×4 Response became a registered charity, acknowledging the voluntary and charitable work done by the organisation.
Since then the movement has continued to expand and now comprises 31 member groups and one other “aligned” group, that cover the whole of England, Wales and the Isle of Man; in Scotland all but two counties are covered.
Click here to visit the national website where you can find more information about the network and other groups from across the country.