Category Archives: Devon

The important role of search and rescue volunteers

Finding the lost missing injured and vulnerable

All images copyright of Dartmoor Search and Rescue Ashburton

Dartmoor Search and Rescue team members finding an injured walker

Dartmoor Search and Rescue Ashburton specialise in finding the lost, injured and vulnerable

Dartmoor Search and Rescue Ashburton is a volunteer search and rescue charity, affiliated to Mountain Rescue England and Wales (MREW), who find the lost, missing injured and vulnerable, not just on Dartmoor but across Devon and to major incidents nationally.

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Bovey Tracey councillors disappoint

Bovey Tracey Players have used a performing space in the Bovey Tracey Town Hall for many years. However, the performing space is under threat as the Town Council has put the hall up for sale without any alternative provision to continue with the ability to put on performances. A sad state of affairs.

Bovey Tracey Town Hall is up for sale threatening the future of a performaning space in the town. The councillors  however seem reluctant to engage with the community  and more concerned about how I got their email addresses rather than answering my email. Disappointing

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The Bowerman’s Kiss

Copyright - Alan Pewsey - Bowermans KissAlways nice to get a bit of recognition and I came across this blog post on the Dartmoor National Park Authority website recently.

http://dartmoornpa.wordpress.com/2011/12/23/merry-kissmas-from-dartmoor-national-park-authority/

Bowerman’s Nose is a rather impressive and distinctive rocky outcrop on Hayne’s Down near Manaton on Dartmoor. Legend has it the poor unfortunate hunter was turned to stone by a witch who also turned his hounds to stone and are scattered around him across the down.

It is very well photographed as any Google search will prove, so I thought for this image I would have a bit of fun and think of a unusual composition. So far I have not come across anybody else who has thought of this capture.

Hope you like it.

Search and rescue with a bit of detective work

Search and rescue with a difference

Panasonic Lumix TZ7

Panasonic Lumix TZ7

Each Wednesday evening the Dartmoor Search and Rescue Team at Ashburton meets for its weekly training session at various locations across the moor and Wednesday the 3rd April was a navigation themed evening which turned into a successful find without the need for a stretcher.

Meeting at Hexworthy Drift we split into groups of 3 and 4 and were given various points to find as part of the navigation theme for the evening. Our team found our first few points and about 9pm in the dark we started to head back to the start from Mount Misery.

Following no set path but walking on a bearing across difficult ground of wet grass tussocks in the dark, John, one of the 3 in our group, spotted a small black Lowe Alpine bag, about the size 5 inches long and 3 inches wide lying in the grass. An amazing find at anytime and the chances of coming across it must have been millions to 1. But, the story doesn’t end there.

Me being a self-professed geek and the team webmaster and social media man, decided I would try and track down the owner. The camera, a small Lumix DZ7, no longer worked thanks to the Dartmoor wet, but the memory card was readable. Examining the photos on the computer I found pictures of 3 adults on a bivvy weekend on the moor – presumably just before they lost the camera – and a family holiday in Torquay. Not much to go on so far but the 3rd set of pictures gave me hope. They showed what appeared to be a school sports day and the vital clue was some of the children participating were wearing school polo shirts.

Zooming in on one of the polo shirts showed a logo with text, and the text was just readable giving a name of a school. Armed with this information I got on to Google and the first result showed the name of the school with the same logo in Bournemouth.

An email to the school received a reply with the name of the family and an email address. Bingo! An email conversation followed and the camera and memory card was returned to its owner. Result!

A follow up is that the owner was interviewed on BBC Radio Solent about the amazing story and is apparently due to be back on the moor this weekend. Lets hope he doesn’t drop anything!

Missing on Dartmoor

Dartmoor National Park, a wilderness

Every Wednesday night throughout the year the Dartmoor Search & Rescue Team – Ashburton meets at various locations across the moor to train on aspects of search and rescue. During the summer months, this tends to be the more technical aspects such as rope and swift water rescue, with the wild and dark winter evenings spent training on search and rescue exercise (sar-ex) scenarios as well as navigation and related topics

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The art of rope rescue

Typically trainee members of the Dartmoor Search & Rescue Team – Ashburton undergo a training period of between 12 – 18 months, and if the training is completed successfully they are presented with their team jackets as they become fully fledged members.

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Ten Tors 2012

The second weekend in May every year is ‘The Ten Tors Weekend’ when 2400 14 – 19 year olds tackle 10 tors on routes of either 35, 45 or 55 miles over 2 days. Not forgetting the Jubilee event where another 300 or so youngsters with varying degrees of disability tackle their own Ten Tors.  Although I have been involved with Ten Tors on and off in various capacities over the last 30+ years, this was my first year as a fully qualified member of the Dartmoor Search & Rescue Team, Ashburton.

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