West Highland Museum
The stretcher was invented by Donald Duff (1893-1968) in 1944, and was used by Lochaber Mountain Rescue Team, whose patch includes Ben Nevis.
Duff was a doctor, pioneer of Scottish mountain rescue, inventor, author, and the leader of Lochaber Mountain Rescue Team in the late 1940s and 1950s. As chief surgeon at the Belford Hospital in Fort William, he would often treat the casualties he had just rescued in the hospital still dressed in his mountain attire.
Duff’s stretcher was in common use until it was replaced by the MacInnes stretcher, which incorporated features of the Duff stretcher into its design.
The MacInnes stretcher was invented by local mountaineering legend Hamish MacInnes (1930 – 2020). The lightweight, folding MacInnes MK1 came into use in the early 1960s and later versions of it is still used by Scottish mountain rescue teams today.