Incident 52/2011

At 20.50hrs NWAS (Manchester) Belle Vue Control contacted our Team Leader Garry Rhodes MBE directly requesting the teams assistance to help locate a casualty reported injured on a disused railway line in the Tyldesley area.

A passing dog walker had reported an apparently injured young woman to Greater Manchester Police, who in turn called out NWAS (Manchester)

Two GMP Officers met with the attending NWAS (Manchester) Emergency Ambulance crew but could not locate the injured person, who was reported to be on the Tyldesley to Worsley Linear Walkway, which runs along the heavily vegetated route of a former railway line.

GMP Air Support Unit helicopter ’India 99’ was also involved, and overhead on scene when the team was requested.

Our Team Leader put out a full team pager call out at 20.56hrs then got in his car for the all of one minute journey by road to the Incident RVP on Sale Lane, Tyldesley. (At its junction with Chester Road) (Is this the fastest response ever to an incident location by a Bolton MRT member after receiving an emergency call out?)

Here our Team Leader Garry Rhodes MBE discussed options with the GMP Officers and NWAS crew present, whilst awaiting the arrival of further team members.


The original informant, a local woman, returned to the RVP and further briefed our Team Leader and Deputy Team Leader Geoff Seddon.

At 21.19hrs a mixed party of three Bolton MRT members (Louise Jorgensen, Mike O’Brien and Steve O’Hara) and the two NWAS crew departed the RVP to travel along the Walkway to try and locate the young casualty.

At this same time, a local family requested the assistance of the NWAS crew with their baby who had fallen suffering a head injury. (See Incident Report 53-2011 above)


As more team members arrived, GMP ASU departed, and an intensive search of the Linear walkway was undertaken, including adjacent open farmland, woods and a stream course.

The search took in the Linear walkway from Sale Lane, Tyldesley to Newwarth Road, Worsley, including mosley Common and Honksford Brook.

By 23.20hrs the search had been completed with negative results (The NWAS vehicl;e having departed slightly earlier, the crew having assisted with the actual search operation)


In continuing liaison with GMP Force Control Room, the Local Area on Duty Inspector and a GMP Missing Person Search Manager, the search was stood down.

At this stage no persons were reported missing, no admissions matching the description of the injured young woman had occurred at the three local Accident and Emergency Hospitals, and a local ’Care Home’ had been checked.

At 23.35hrs all Mountain Rescue resources departed the incident RVP.

The following resources were all involved in this incident:

  • North West Ambulance Service (Manchester): Belle Vue Emergency Ambulance Control, Emergency Ambulance and two crew from Highfield (Bolton South) Ambulance Station.
  • Greater Manchester Police: Force Control room, Duty Area Inspector, two Officers on scene, one Missing Person Search Manager.
  • Greater Manchester Police Air Support Unit helicopter, ’India 99,’ (Part of the North West Air Operations Group-Police)
  • Bolton Mountain Rescue Team: Twenty two team members, all four of our Land Rover Defender Mountain Rescue Ambulance vehicles.

As a footnote, whilst engaged on this search team members met up with long retired GMP Officer, former Inspector John Szymala, who was a Police Missing Person Search Manager and a great friend and valued supporter of the team, who was walking in the area at the time of our search.

John passed on his best wishes to all in the team who remembered him.