Exercise Autumn Gold deemed a success today

Following a successful joint day exercise last year on Sunday 16th November 2014 (see website ‘News’ report dated the same) this year we repeated the same exercise format with Exercise Autumn Gold which took place today.

Organised and planned jointly between our Training Officer Alistair Greenough and our Team Leader Garry Rhodes MBE, the exercise once again had our friends from Remote Medic UK taking a full part, both as exercise players and running some of the exercise training sessions.

IMG_2934To make the most of their long journey from the south of England up to our team primary operational area, the ten Remote Medic UK members taking part, actually started arriving on Friday evening 20th November, with some staying overnight at our Ladybridge Hall Base / HQ.

In a separate part to the main exercise, on Saturday 21st November, the ten Remote Medic UK members were transported in our Ford Transit Minibus Ambulance to the Cadshaw area, high up on the moors between Bolton and Darwen.

Here on a chillingly cold day, with snow underfoot from an overnight snowfall, team members Heath Doran, Mike Marsh, Michael Wakerley and our Training Officer Alistair Greenough, assisted by former Bolton MRT member Gyles Denn, set up a full day of steep ground rope work including stretcher lowering for the ten Remote Medic UK members.

The exercise within the small quarry prior to Cadshaw Main Quarry, commenced mid morning and was completed late afternoon.

IMG_2948Early Sunday morning, saw Exercise Autumn Gold commence, with Bolton MRT members assembling at our Ladybridge Hall Base / HQ at 08.30hrs.

All then travelled with our friends from Remote Medic UK to the exercise location situated on the moorland track of Georges Lane, in the vicinity of Brown Hill in the shadow of Rivington Pike.

A very cold morning greeted all, as the participants were split in to four groups to then ‘rotate’ around four exercise scenarios, all fully detailed and organised by our Training Officer Alistair Greenough, with the exercises commencing at circa 10.30hrs.

Throughout the full day of this exercise members of the teams Support Group provided full catering for all taking part, from our Catering Trailer Unit (Huge thanks to Support Group members Iain Clarkson, Gillian Gregory, John Ryan and Sarah Hindle)

IMG_2950The four exercise locations provided opportunities to practise casualty handling and extrication techniques, small object searching, airway management and leg fracture management, and steep ground work, from the Wilderswood area to the River Douglas valley.

Transport between the exercise locations was provided by our colleagues from North West 4×4 Response (including former Bolton MRT member John Forsdick)

By dusk Exercise Autumn Gold was completed, and judged a great success by all taking part, at the end of day ‘hot debrief’ session.

The thanks of all taking part are expressed to the members of Bolton MRT Support Group who provided full day catering support, to United Utilities for access permission and to the many members of the public who in passing kindly passed on their comments of support in the work of the Bolton MRT.

IMG_2954The following groups and organisations took part in todays Exercise Autumn Gold;

  • Bolton Mountain Rescue Team; 16x operational team members, one potential probationary team member, four Support Group members, all four of our Land Rover Defender Mountain Rescue Ambulances, Ford Transit Minibus Ambulance, Volkswagen Crafter Van based Incident Control Vehicle, Catering Unit Trailer.
  • Bay Search and Rescue Team; Team members Dan Wright and Joe Ashton, with their Renault Minibus ‘Bay Mobile 4.’
  • Cheshire Search and Rescue Team; Team member John Mawer.
  • Remote Medic UK; Ten members.
  • Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service; Five crew including Watch Manager Carl Lunt and one Pump Appliance from GMFRS Horwich Community Fire Station.
  • North West 4×4 Response; Team members John Forsdick, Duncan Sanders, Steve and Andrea Cresswell and Dave Stewart, with two Land Rover Discoverys and one Land Rover Defender.
  • Exercise Casualties; Father and son, John and Ciaran Clare, from 25th Bolton Scout Group (John is a Scout Section Assistant and young Ciaran is a Patrol Leader) and Neil Ramsbottom (former Bolton MRT)
  • Exercise Advisor / helper; Former Bolton MRT member Gyles Denn.

Thanks finally to United Utilities Ranger Andrew Ryding, a former Bolton MRT member, who called by to wish us every success with this exercise.

IMG_2957Next year under the name of Exercise Autumn Tint, we have scheduled this exercise for Sunday 20th November 2016 within the teams primary upland operational area.

Already confirmed to joining us and attending the 2016 exercise are once again Remote Medic UK, Cheshire Search and Rescue Team (full team attendance) Merseyside Lowland Search and Rescue Team, and North West 4×4 Response.