Bolton MRT awareness day today for Merseyside Lowland Search and Rescue Team

This morning, eight members of the ALSAR Probationary team, Merseyside Lowland Search and Rescue Team, visited our team for a Bolton MRT awareness day with us.

Arriving at 09.00hrs, at our Ladybridge Hall Base / HQ, the eight included Training Officers Roy Goodier and Matthew Davies, Committee member Martin Blakeborough, Full members Phil Heating and Chris Owen, and Probationary members Martin Eccles, Vanda Cowan and Edward Cowan.

They were initially met by our Training Officer Alistair Greenough, and as other Bolton MRT members started arriving, morning tea and biscuits was followed by two DVDs illustrating mountain rescue in England and Wales.

Awareness sessions then took place with team members demonstrating all our mountain rescue stretcher types, and our wide range of splinting equipment, ending with ‘tours’ of all six of our team vehicles, and the search and rescue equipment carried on board each one.

Lunch break followed, with Bolton MRT Trainee team member Gary Melia bringing along yet another tasty hand made large pork pie – enough for everybody, and fellow Trainee member Steve James his latest excellent home baking (Great Lemon Drizzle sponge)

All then departed – fourteen Bolton MRT and the eight Merseyside LSART members, in our six team vehicles to the first of two outdoor exercise locations, starting at the Lower House, Rivington, area, and then moving on to Wards Reservoir, Belmont.

Both exercises gave the Merseyside LSART members an introduction to mountain rescue stretcher handling, over a variety of terrain, with some casualty care and equipment useage also practised.

All then returned for a debrief and farewells, to our Ladybridge Hall Base / HQ at circa 17.00hrs.
In total fifteen Bolton MRT members attended the morning session, with fourteen staying for the afternoon practical sessions, also present was DVSD Search Dog Sasha.

Simon Lane, Team Leader of Cheshire SART also attended for the morning session, almost straight after finishing a family holiday in Tenerife (that’s commitment)

This same evening our Team Leader Garry Rhodes MBE, received the following kind email from Matthew Davies of Merseyside Lowland Search and Rescue Team;


On behalf of the whole  team at MerSAR, a big thank you for an excellent days training by a clearly very experienced (and well kitted!!) team.

Your team’s hospitality was superb (as was the cake) and MerSAR members benefitted significantly from the professionalism and experience of yourself and your colleagues.

From equipment to techniques, today has been very useful indeed and furnishes us with ideas and aspirations for our own team development.

Looking forward to catching up in the very near future and I am delighted that one of our team members will be able to return the favour and assist in rope training CPD for Bolton MRT.

Kindest regards, Matthew

Matthew Davies.

Training Officer and Immediate Past Chairman, MerSAR.”

The Bolton MRT welcomed this opportunity to meet our colleagues at Merseyside LSART and to forge new friendships and new working partnerships, all to help those in need in the north west.

We look forward to meeting up with our new friends at Merseyside LSART again in May, when we’ll be holding a joint evening exercise at Rivington with Merseyside LSART alongside our long established friends at Cheshire SART.