Oldham MRT Rope Rescue weekend

Today team member John Fletcher travelled to Saddleworth in Oldham for a residential rope rescue seminar hosted by Oldham Mountain Rescue Team at the Boarshurst Centre. The seminar is open to members of Mountain/Cave/Search and Rescue Teams and our colleges in the Emergency Services and has run yearly for approximately the past 25 years, all the catering and instruction is provided by the Oldham team members.

On arrival on Friday night once the ‘meet and greet’ was over all 32 delegates were ferried to Oldham Mountain Rescue Team Headquarters (which is conveniently attached to the Cross Keys Public House!) for an introduction and safety briefing for the two days ahead. Needless to say that once the briefing was over Oldham Team members and course delegates managed to find their way to the pub before getting their heads-down for the early 7am start on Saturday.

After having a full cooked breakfast (courtesy of the Oldham Team members) the delegates gathered for a briefing before heading off to the Upperwood crag for the first practical session of the weekend. On arrival at the crag the 32 delegates were split into four groups for the ‘round robin’ sessions consisting of single man rescue, strop rescue, horizontal stretcher lower and single point cableway lower. At each section the group were given comprehensive instruction on the rescue techniques by the Oldham Team members. At the end of a very tiring, wet and windy day the delegates were treated to a three course meal, again cooked by the Oldham Team Members. After a shower and a change once again delegates were transported to the Oldham HQ (pub) for an informal de-brief, followed by a few well earned pints.

Sunday morning came without a break in the bad weather and once filled up with another full cooked breakfast the course delegates made their way to Rob’s Rocks for the final day of the course. Oldham Team members had been up bright and early to set up multiple casualty rescue situations. Delegates within their teams then had to affect a rescue using the techniques learnt on Saturday. The day ended with an impressive 100m+ cable way lower across Wilderness Gully.

John would like express his thanks to the Oldham Team, the staff at the Cross Keys and the Boarshurst Centre Committee for making this fantastic weekend possible.