Congratulations to Calder Valley Search and Rescue team member and SARDA England Search Dog Handler Ellie Sherwin on her 25 Years in mountain rescue achievement

Congratulations from all at Bolton MRT are extended to Ellie Sherwin, of Calder Valley SRT / SARDA England, on her recent 25 years in mountain rescue achievement.

As an air scenting search and rescue dog handler with SARDA England, Ellie has a very long history of assisting Bolton MRT on a great many search operations within the Bolton MRT primary area of operations, and has always and consistently answered our many calls for assistance from her over the many years she has operated as a SARDA Dog Handler with now deceased Search Dog Bonnie, and her current operational Search Dog – Pepper.

The following is from the website of Calder Valley Search and Rescue Team;

Ellie SherwinAt our AGM last week, CVSRT & SARDA member Ellie Sherwin was awarded with her 25 years Long Service Award with Calder Valley Search and Rescue Team.  What an excellent achievement and incredible commitment.  Well done Ellie, from all at CVSRT.  (pictured here with Search Dog Pepper).

Ellie has kindly written a synopsis of her time with the team so far…

“I have always been an outdoor person and over 25 years ago I was acting as a “body” for the search and rescue dogs.  At this point I decided I would like to be more involved in the nitty gritty of the rescue team and possibly the search dogs, so approached the team about joining.

I can remember being grilled about my “hill” experience, but think that membership of the Fell and Rock Climbing Club of the English Lake District, numerous Munro’s bagged, trips to the Alps, (including Mont Blanc), probably helped to convince the training officer of my capabilities. I also had an outdoor career as a Countryside Warden, at Hollingworth Lake Country Park, which may have contributed to my suitability.

During my time in Calder Valley Search and Rescue Team I have held the position of Secretary and Minutes Secretary, but my main interest has always been with the Search and Rescue Dogs. After a difficult period training my first dog Bonnie, I was awarded the coveted “Novice Shield” in 1995, for outstanding performance at the assessment.

The 4-day assessment confirms your ability to be included on the call out list as a dog handler. In fact my first call out was to search for a man missing near Baitings Dam near Ripponden, and after a very short search Bonnie located the missing person alive, behind a broken down wall.  Following this we featured on a TV programme “Potty about Pets”, in which the team, Bonnie and myself were involved in a re-enactment of the scenario.

Bonnie sadly died at 10 years old, but after a short break Pepper joined the family and proved to be a willing student in the art of search and rescue. Pepper has been graded for 7 years now and in that time has found 2 missing people.

I have been National Secretary for SARDA England for two long periods and have also held the position of Members Rep and Training Officer.

Through the team I have had the privilege of joining a group of like-minded people, with great skill and enthusiasm, all dedicated to helping others”.

Ellie Sherwin

CVSRT & SARDA dog handler