Team called out in urgent search for missing child

At the conclusion of this evening’s weekly training, which tonight consisted of a moorland navigation and stretcher evacuation exercise on Winter Hill, most of 28 team members who took part retired for a social drink at the Jolly Crofters Public House in Horwich.

We had barely arrived in the pub when at 23:00 we were paged by Greater Manchester Police for the team’s immediate assistance with regards to a developing search operation for a missing 6 year old child in the Tonge Moor area of Bolton.

Whilst our Team Leader Garry Rhodes MBE was contacting GMP to obtain further information, other team members were immediately despatched to collect our control trailer, obtain mapping information (using our digital mapping facilities at our Base/HQ), and arrange catering supplies for what was looking to be an all-night search.

Our Deputy Team Leader Geoff Seddon meanwhile had requested the assistance of Mountain Rescue Trail Dog handler Iain Nicholson and Mountain Rescue Search Dog handler Alison Nicholson and their two search dogs Mij and Floss from our colleagues at Bowland Pennine MRT.

At 23:14 a full team callout page was made alerting the rest of the team to the need for an immediate response.

At this same time, our Team Leader was directly contacted by GMP, and also by pager, to say that the missing six year old child had been located and the search was stood down. A full team stand down pager message was sent at 23:17 with a large number of team members already in transit to the search RVP.

We understand Greater Manchester Police resources deployed to this search included Divisional Officers, a Missing Person Search Manager, and a Police Air Support Unit Helicopter from the North West Air Operations Group (Police).

We have not included this incident in our overall incident listings and present this report for informational purposes only.