NEXT time large-scale flooding hits the country, Salisbury will be ready thanks to a new voluntary organisation.

Serve On is a new group that will support the Environment Agency and other organisations with emergency response when there is large-scale flooding like the country experienced earlier this year.

Dave Dunford who has set up the group hopes to take the idea nationwide and also create an international team for earthquake response, but he has set up the first community resilience team in Salisbury over the last few months and is looking for more members.

He settled on the name Serve On after working with ex-servicemen and women.

Mr Dunford is a former fireman and had the idea of giving ex-servicemen and women the opportunity to get involved after a meeting at Tedworth House.

But he says the voluntary group is not just for ex-service personnel. “People wouldn’t have to be in the services; that was just the starting point. I want as many people as possible to join.”

The group meets fortnightly at Salisbury fire station where volunteers undergo a training programme to prepare them for helping with flood response. If serious flooding happened again, Serve On members would work with local authorities to warn and inform people, educate them on how to protect their homes and do mapping for the Environment Agency about where the water is high and where rivers are blocked.

There are currently about 20 volunteers in the group but Mr Dunford would like to have twice as many as that trained up to deal with flooding incidents by December.

Anyone interested in joining the group can email