Sep 22 2008
Terry Blumhardt a 37 years old member of Turangi Search and Rescue, part of the New Zealand Land Search and Rescue organisation, has been in the UK since 20th August 2008.
He journeyed here on a study tour to visit Mountain Search and Rescue teams throughout the UK, including attending the National Mountain Rescue conference in Stirling in early September, where he presented an overview of search and rescue in New Zealand.
Prior to arriving in the UK he had contacted a number of teams to set up potential visits including our team, via our Team Leader, Garry Rhodes.
Over the last few weeks he has managed to visit a great many teams and asked all a common set of questions around their operations, techniques and resources.
It looked like he was running out of time to visit our team, when at the last minute arrangements were put in hand for him to visit us today, before departing for back home to New Zealand on Wednesday 24th September.
Long-serving Bolton MRT team call out list member Chris Tennant and his wife Tina, a member of our support Group, kindly provided a bed for Terry in the Bolton area last night, prior to him visiting the team today.
Now in all his time in the UK with MRT’s an actual call out with his MR colleagues in the UK has eluded Terry, but all that was to change.
No sooner had he settled in with the Tennants, when we were called out very late evening to a urban parkland search operation on the outskirts of Manchester, extending into the early hours of this morning.
Of course Terry was invited along, joining one of our search parties (see incident 93/2008).
No sooner had that finished when we received a somewhat unusual early hours of the morning call out to assist NWAS (GMA) with a youth who had fallen down a steep slope sustaining possible spinal injuries, in the Cadishead area of Irlam. (for us, apart from the hour of call out, a typical ’urban type’ rescue)
So off went Terry again, joining in the careful stretcher evacuation of the youth. (see incident 94/2008).
Terry finally got to bed in the middle of the morning but was up again for his 10:00 scheduled visit to our team base/HQ at Ladybridge Hall, Bolton, this morning! You’d have thought by this stage he’d have had enough of us!
Met by team members Chris Greenhalgh, Andrew Livesey and Mark Scott, Terry was given a (daylight) tour of our base/HQ, vehicles and equipment.
Chris, Andrew and Mark also exchanged with Terry lots of information about our respective services.
Terry kindly went over his Powerpoint presentation on New Zealand search and rescue with the three, that he presented at the Mountain Rescue Conference.
Armed with everything we could pass on to him about our team, and having provided him with not one but two call outs which to date had eluded him on his UK tour, Chris, Andrew and Mark bade farewell to Terry mid afternoon, for him to journey south to catch his London flight back to New Zealand on Wednesday.
All of us at Bolton MRT wish Terry a safe flight back, and hope he fulfilled all the aims of his ’UK Mountain Rescue fact finding tour’.