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West Sussex Fire & Rescue Service Successfully Complete Training Exercise at The Cathedral's Bell Tower (posted 15 September 2016)

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West Sussex Fire & Rescue Service Successfully Complete Training Exercise at Chichester Cathedral's Bell Tower

West Sussex Fire & Rescue Training Exercise
West Sussex Fire & Rescue Training Exercise

On Wednesday 14th September 2016 West Sussex Fire & Rescue Service carried out a training exercise at the Cathedral's Bell Tower to ensure that all organisations would be able to work together if anyone was ever injured on the upper levels of the 120ft tower.  

The tower was built in the late 14th or early 15th Century.  Its upper levels, including the ringing chamber, are closed to the public but accessed via a narrow stone spiral staircase at last twice a week when the bells are rung.

The exercise tested how local fire crews and the WSFRS Technical Rescue Unit would help ambulance crews safely evacuate an injured casualty from the tower's upper levels.  Event Organiser James Trotman, a Resilience and Emergencies Advisor, said: "This is a great opportunity for the Cathedral and West Sussex Fire & Rescue Service to work together to ensure we could safely help bring any injured party safely back down to the ground.  It's a fabulous structure but access is very difficult, particularly where the stone staircase becomes more and more narrow towards the top".

The pretend casualty was a member of the Cathedral staff team, Dawn Allen, who along with her husband Tony Allen, the Cathedral's Acting Clerk of Works, supported the exercise. 

Photographs from the training exercise can be view below.  Click here to read more.

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