Problems in Cornwall


New member
Surely the British Cave Rescue Council know a little more about underground safety than the police?    o_O

I appreciate that rescues are coordinated through the police and the safety of all involved lies ultimately the responsibility of Sgt Rose but this surely leaves a gap in rescue services across the county  :mad:  A delayed response time at the very least. 

I know... lets fly some people in from elsewhere who probably don't know the mines as well  (y)

Peter Burgess

New member
Would the problem be eased if the former members of the Cornwall rescue team were to offer their services to (i.e. join) Devon CRO as individuals? Then the Devon CRO would have a local team to call upon on the spot!


Well-known member
This happened a while back. DCRO are now covering Cornwall. Might give me a chance to visit some Cornish mines - only had brief forays into adits as nobody to go with :( This is despite my wife's family all living within 5 miles of St. Just!


New member
Has this "Sgt Rose" ever actually been caving :thumbsdown:? What an weak view and possibly negative way off cost cutting (IMHO)  :mad: Bureaucratic idiots like this guy (Sgt Rose) are ruining this country



Well-known member
Unfortunately whether we like it or not we have to work with the emergency services above ground. DCRO have had to invest quite a bit of cash to project the right 'image' but they have developed a good relationship with the emergency services. MCR are going the same way. It is likely that by maintaining a good relationship with the surface emergency services this we will retain some autonomy over our rescue  activities underground and avoid interference where it really matters. I suspect the Cornish rescue team failed to grasp the sad fact that nowadays image is everything.

Les W

Active member
Daz_of_caving said:
What an weak view and possibly negative way off cost cutting (IMHO)

I shouldn't think cost is the issue, rescue teams are volunteers and are free of cost to the police. In fact it will cost them much more if they have to fly a team in.


<not serious>

Let's have some paranoia on this thread too, even though this is rather old news. After all there's nothing like a conspiracy theory for good pub ammo:

1. Sgt Mike Rose "worked with a small group of dedicated volunteers to help bring about the formation of a new SAR group called Cornwall Search and Rescue Team (CSART) which has proved extremely effective since its formation in 2003."

2. Is this is the team that CMRO were requested to merge with.

3. Mike Rose is a search co-ordinator with the Police and also runs Emergency Response (UK) part of Emergency Response International (quote in 1. above is from his web site This business specialises in search management training.

</not serious>

gus horsley

New member
mrodoc said:
This happened a while back. DCRO are now covering Cornwall. Might give me a chance to visit some Cornish mines - only had brief forays into adits as nobody to go with :( This is despite my wife's family all living within 5 miles of St. Just!

Send me a pm if you fancy more than just a brief foray.

Treacle Miner

Hi everyone I've just joined up but been earwigging for a while  ;)

The following post should I hope shed light on the rescue situation in Cornwall
The Sgt Rose business had a lot of people working very hard to apease the guy. Unfortunately he did not want to play ball.
He was invited to go underground with CMRO and refused by saying he did not believe he would be safe. Sounds suspiciously like a closet claustrophobic to me! and also spelled out the fact that there was always a deeper rooted agenda.
The present Chair (and ony chairman so far) was for a while a member of CMRO. He took up the post of chairman and started to get things going the way he thought fit. Unfortunately this included re arranging the equipment bags so no one knew what was where when they needed it. After many complaints from the team he was forced to return to the system that everyone knew; a system has since been commended by BCRC.
during his time in office he was approached by the said Sgt to get CMRO involved with surface SAR and went ahead by issuing a voting form that basically told members to welcome this new development or get out.
Needless to say there was great opposition to this dictatorial approach. The members voted to stay as a mine rescue team because that's what they did...Mine Rescue.
Faced with this defeat he resigned on the spot and took his disgruntled entourage with him. Some months later the surface team made it's appearence. No surprises there, and CMRO welcomed the fact that there was now a seperate team to handle surface SAR in the county.
From then on CMRO was made the target of a whispering campaign which, even though the team no longer exists, is still going on today; Ref the Recent dog rescue at Wheal Sisters which ex team members brought to a happy conclusion, much it seems to the chagrin of a certain other group.
The Sgt already refered to, openly stated that he would not recognise the findings of a further BCRC asessment of the teams capabilities.
As for joining the Devon Cave Resue Org, this was suggested to us by the Sgt as an option. The proposal was put to CMRO members and would have been wholly taken up but for two obstacles. Firstly the trust in the Police had been seriously eroded given the way in which CMRO had not been informed that they had been taken 'offline' with no notification from Sgt Rose or any reason why. When quizzed about this he said it wasn't his job to do that!!!?
Secondly, with an MO such as his, CMRO were afraid that if athere were to be a joining of the Cornish team with the Devon team, it could be used as a crowbar to systematically change the way in which the long established DCRO also worked.
What reasons for all this? Your guess is as good as mine, but the majority of the underground set in Cornwall and Devon believe it is the first step to get a country wide Standard Operating Procedure for all CRO's.
It's unfortunate that he does not understand the unique nature of the underground environment, what works in one mine or cave would be totally inappropriate in another and no two rescue scenarios are the same so SOP's only work at the equipment and technical level.
The mining and caving community in Cornwall are not happy with the situation at all, and as for flying people about. :confused:
I hope that this has been informative and no doubt there will be fall out from this too............No change there then! :sleep:



Active member
mrodoc said:
[snip]  DCRO have had to invest quite a bit of cash to project the right 'image' [snip]

Can I have a boiler suit with CAVE RESCUE on the back?  ;)

Apologies Pete for quoting you out of context


Well-known member
The reason for all this is all probbably down to health and safety red tape, because they did not do the neccessary paper work such as risk assesment forms and that rubbish. So the sargent tried to merge them with a group that did.

I mean what would you put on the risk assesment form dangers: drops, gasses & collapses its all common sense and I assume everyone on the team know the risks so why should they need to fill out any forms?



The Health and Safety and Risk Assessment for CMRO was carried out by a doctor of mining engineering, and deemed to be a 'competent person' by the mines inspectorate!!! He is also a Health and Safety professional!!!  :mad: