Report on Team visit to Wellfield High School, Leyland, Lancashire, on Thursday 24th September 2015

On Thursday 24th September 2015, we reported that team members Michael Eddleston, Trainee member Steve James and our President Bob Hutchinson, had journeyed to Wellfield High School, Yewlands Drive, Leyland, to give a presentation on the work of the team to Year 7 pupils.

Joining the three, who attended with our Land Rover Defender Mountain Rescue Ambulance, radio callsign ‘Bolton Mobile 1,’ was very long serving team member Diane Blakeley, who in her capacity as Assistant Head Teacher Learning and Teaching at Wellfield, had organised the visit.

The afternoon saw our colleagues from NWAS and LFRS also visiting the school.

There follows a report on this team visit by Diane Blakeley;

“My ‘real’ job is as Assistant Head Teacher at Wellfield High School in Leyland.

I am always keen to provide opportunities for pupils to find out more about the ‘real world’ to help them gain new experiences and knowledge.

1This year I organised a ‘Wider World Day’ which links in with so many aspects of PSHCE for our new Year 7 pupils.

I invited in four different organisations, these included Guide Dogs for the Blind; Lancashire Fire & Rescue Service, Leyland; North West Ambulance Service and of course our own Bolton Mountain Rescue Team.

Steve James and Team President Bob Hutchinson arrived early in our Bolton Mobile 1 Land Rover, followed shortly by Michael Eddleston, who had kindly stepped in at the last minute when Paul Copley was taken ill.

On their arrival we visited the canteen to provide them with a drink and for some a bacon butty before setting up for the day’s events.

As there had been a lot of rain earlier, it was decided that the team would set up on the tennis courts as the fields were a little too wet and they were ready for their first group.

The team would deliver one hour long sessions to the four different “houses” – Anglezarke, Pendle, Rivington and Winter Hill.

3As our visitors started to work with their first groups’ the heavens opened and a massive downpour saw the groups with Bolton MRT and Lancashire FRS dash into our Sports Hall to get some shelter.

Not deterred we organised suitable areas and both groups adapted their demonstrations and the sessions continued.

Bolton MRT became based in the Dance Studio, where Michael and Steve took half of the group to do stretcher carrying, whilst Bob took the rest to look at our casualty care equipment including using some of the vacuum splints.

As the rain stopped and sun came out pupils took the opportunity to visit Bolton Mobile 1.

As the hour came to an end the pupils headed off to the next activity and a new group arrived.

For those heading to the Guide Dogs for the Blind, they learnt about what it was like to be visually impaired; what Guide Dogs do and how they are trained.  Our guests were Julie and Dave Oliver, with Julie’s Guide Dog, Queenie.

As the sun had come out the pupils were able to go back to their team building exercises with the Fire Service which included races against each other to set up the fire hoses and at times spray me with water as I tried to take photographs.

The final activity was with our friends from NWAS.

The school recently achieved an NWAS Cardiac Smart Silver Award, the same award the team has.

As part of this I had organised for every pupil in school to be trained on basic life support, and as we now had our Year 7 pupils, I was keen that they also received this training, which they now all have.

Following another round of bacon butties at break and another group, Michael had to leave us, so I swapped from Assistant Head Teacher to Mountain Rescuer changing into my team kit to help with the last session.

Once all four groups had finished it was time for all the guests to meet up for lots of sandwiches and cakes.

On behalf of all the staff and pupils at Wellfield I would like to thank Steve, Bob and Michael.

The pupils are still talking to me about the session and have been asking questions to find out more.

A great day for the all the pupils and staff alike; thanks guys for giving up your day.”