Mendip Cave Rescue
After 43 years of dedicated service to Mendip Cave Rescue, Nigel Taylor retired earlier this year. A farewell was held as part of a presentation evening at the Hunters Lodge Inn on the 9th June 2018. Nigel was made a warden in 1975 and has attended many call-outs over the years. In those days equipment was much more basic. Communication underground was made by reeling out hundreds of feet of wire to attach a telephone. Also, the first strike bag had a packet of 10 cigarettes in it, which were to calm the nerves of the casualty (known as a victim in those days) and the rescuer! The presentation evening also showed how cave rescue equipment and techniques have evolved over the years.
Nigel Taylor being presented with a certificate from the MCR secretary Martin Grass
Mendip Cave Rescue were called by Avon and Somerset Police at 21:28 on Tuesday 19th June 2018 for an incident in Goatchurch Cavern in Burrington Combe. A party of two had entered the cave via the Main entrance, and then attempted to exit the cave via the alternative Tradesmen’s entrance. Due to the polished nature of the rock they found that they were unable climb out, but managed to raise the alarm to their friends outside, who in turn called the Police for assistance. Mendip Cave Rescue attended, with two Wardens entering the cave and providing a handline and lifeline to assist with the climb. Mendip Cave Rescue were supported by Avon Fire and Rescue and South West Ambulance HART team, and the incident was closed at 22:39 with everyone safely back on the surface.
Last year, a long-standing Mendip Caving Group and Bracknell & District Caving Club member Biff Frith passed away after a short battle with pancreatic cancer. Biff was an enthusiastic and talented Mendip cave digger, and a number of Mendip entrances bear testament to his skill in engineering passageways through areas of slightly dubious stability. During an evening celebrating Biffs life, a number of caving related books from his collection were auctioned off, and the proceeds of £311 have very generously been donated to Mendip Cave Rescue, for which we are very grateful.
A surface rescue practice evening is to be held with a search around the Longwood Valley / Velvet Bottom area, to include the use of the surface radios, is to be held on Thursday 26th July 2018. Meet at the Black Rock car park at 19:30. This training event is open to all cavers.
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