skip to content

Staffordshire Fire & Rescue Service - Preventing, Protecting, Responding

Firefighters Assist Cliff Fall Woman

Two firefighters from Cheadle have been praised after they leapt into action when a woman slipped off a mountain ridge they were climbing in North Wales.

"We were just glad we could help her and were able to use what first aid we had with us. It is thanks to the training we have as firefighters that we knew what to do and whether on duty or not both me and Rob would always help someone in need as best we could."

Cheadle Firefighter, Dennis Ayre

Susan Holden, 44 from Lincolnshire was scrambling on the North Ridge of Tryfan, part of Snowdonia, at about 10.30am on July 31st when she slipped on the wet ground and fell approximately 10 metres down the side of the mountain.

Cheadle Firefighter Dennis Ayre, 59, said: "I was taking part in the scramble with my colleague, Rob Cartlidge and three of my friends when I heard a scream. I looked up and saw a woman falling through the air above us.

"I grabbed Rob and we ran to her aid and found her lying on the floor, bleeding quite heavily from a head wound. We had a first aid kit with us so we dressed her wounds as best we could, put her in a more stable position and used our silver screens to keep her warm and dry and then Rob called mountain rescue."

Due to the cloud level, the RAF helicopter was unable to land immediately so Dennis and Rob worked together to keep Susan stabilised and as comfortable as possible until she could be rescued safely.

Susan, who is now recovering with her parents in South Wales, said: "I don’t remember the fall at all; alls I remember is being in Dennis’ arms and lying on the floor.

"He kept talking to me and was forcing me to answer his questions to keep me conscious and he kept checking my pupils and pulse.

"Dennis and Rob were so confident and calm, the emergency situation didn’t faze them at all, instead they were telling surrounding people what to do and how to help and briefed mountain rescue so they could get to us as quickly as possible.

"I feel so lucky that it was Dennis and Rob who were there; I keep thinking ‘what if it had been someone who didn’t know what to do."

"I was air lifted to hospital and the hospital staff were amazed that I had no fractures or broken bones, I am very badly bruised from head to toe though and have 25 stitches down the side of my head.

"I’m eternally grateful to the firefighters and mountain rescue and want to say a huge thank you to them. This incident has really made me appreciate the training these people go through and just goes to show that it is extremely beneficial to firefighters to learn about first aid, as it meant that Dennis and Rob were able to spring into action when they were off duty."

Dennis added: "We were just glad we could help her and were able to use what first aid we had with us. It is thanks to the training we have as firefighters that we knew what to do and whether on duty or not both me and Rob would always help someone in need as best we could."