Mountain rescuer who fell 500ft saving campers flouting lockdown rules will be in wheelchair for rest of his life
The mountain rescue volunteer who plunged 500ft trying to save two campers flouting lockdown rules will now have to spend the rest of his life in a wheelchair.
60-year-old Chris Lewis was one of the members called out on February 6th to Red Screes in the Lake District after two men, who had travelled from Liverpool and Leicester, required help.
One of the men, a 47-year-old from Leicester, suffered chest pains during the night which meant the pair needed to call for help.
The campers were each fined £200 for breaching the lockdown rules.
However, Mr Lewis fell on the rescue mission and it has now been confirmed he will spend the rest of his life in a wheelchair.
Patterdale Mountain Rescue team leader Mike Rippon said: “He’s got quite a lot of damage to his back in the area of his neck which has pretty serious and critical conditions for the future.
“We expect him to be at the best case wheelchair-bound but that would be a pretty good outcome.”
Speaking on how the catastrophic injuries suffered by Chris Lewis had hit the entire team, Rippon said: “It has been significant. In the last seven days or so we have tried to assess the team’s morale, mental wellbeing and how it has affected everybody.
“We’ve put things in place to allow people to reach out about what they’re feeling as a result of the incident. These things don’t come out in people overnight so we’ll have to monitor things for the foreseeable future.
“We are a team of dedicated volunteers and like everyone in mountain rescue we give our time freely, we go out and rescue people at the drop of a hat. It is unfortunate that in this case these people were breaking lockdown rules.
“The outpouring of sympathy has been humbling and the funds raised will go to Chris for the long term, they will be for his future.”
His colleague Mike Blakey said: “I’ve done this for 25 years, I can honestly say this was the worst rescue.
“I’ve seen some things in my time but you never expect to have to rescue one of your own. He’s having conversations with me already about where we are going to go in the wheelchair.”
Despite the anger felt towards the two campers online for flouting the lockdown rules, Martin Cotterell from the team of volunteers said they are ‘not there to judge’.
He said: “We are there to help. We all love the fells, we are all mountaineers, we go out there because we think we can help people in difficulty. Trying to judge is wrong.”
An online fundraiser has now been set up, with more than £450,000 already raised to provide Chris with the support he’ll need for the rest of his life.
Local resident Kate Whittenbury, who started one of the funds for Mr Lewis, said: “Local people are quite angry about it to be honest. It didn’t really have to happen, they shouldn’t have been here in the first place.
“I just thought something positive needed to be done to offset the negativity.”
Boy, 11, left in critical condition after being hit by police van
Awful news this morning
A boy has been left in critical condition in hospital following an incident with a police van last night.
The 11-year-old was struck by a police van in Lancaster on Thursday night, May 25th, as the van was attending a call.
Lancashire Police say the vehicle was en route to an emergency call when the collision happened.
The boy was crossing Owen Road just before 8:30 pm when he was hit, and was transported to Royal Lancaster Infirmary in a critical condition.
A police spokesperson said: “Our thoughts are with the child’s loved ones at this time.
“An investigation is underway to establish the full circumstances that led to the collision.
“We have voluntarily referred this matter to the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC), as is standard with an incident of this nature.”
The IOPC said in a statement: “We have declared an independent investigation into the actions of Lancashire Police prior to a road traffic collision in Owen Road, Lancaster at around 8.30pm tonight, in which a child has been injured.
“We understand that a marked police van, with its lights and sirens on, was in a collision with an 11-year-old boy.
“We were notified by the force shortly after the collision and declared an investigation at 10.37pm. IOPC investigators are heading to the scene and the police post incident procedure to begin gathering information.”
According to the IOPC, the investigation is in its early stages.
Sam Smith cancels upcoming shows due to ‘vocal cord injury’ and tells fans ‘I’m so sorry’
‘Refunds will be available at point of purchase for all three dates; Manchester, Birmingham and Glasgow’
Sam Smith has cancelled their upcoming shows due to a vocal cord injury and issued a statement telling fans, ‘I’m so sorry’.
The singer had to call off their Gloria Tour show, mid-way through, at Manchester AO Arena last night (Wednesday May 24th) after experiencing ‘vocal issues’.
The lights went off and fans waited in darkness for a number of minutes as speculation circulated on social media, with many wondering if there had been a ‘power cut’.
Moments later, after just four songs, a packed-out arena was told the show unfortunately had to be called off.
Afterwards, Sam, 31, issued a statement on their Instagram stories to tell fans — who had missed out on a ‘surprise’ that was supposed to be at the end of the show — how ‘sorry’ they were.
Today, Thursday May 25th, the ‘Unholy’ singer has issued another statement after calling off upcoming gigs.
On their Instagram stories, the star wrote: “Due to vocal issues during last night’s Manchester performance, regrettably we will be cancelling the rescheduled Birmingham and Glasgow Sam Smith shows.
“Refunds will be available at point of purchase for all three dates; Manchester, Birmingham and Glasgow.
“A spokesperson said ‘Doctors have advised due to a vocal cord injury, Sam must have complete vocal rest’.
“Sam is heartbroken to have had to cancel these shows but they have been told by doctors that if they keep singing, they will do permanent damage to their voice.
“If they take some rest they will be able to perform again. I’m so sorry.”
Sam already had to push back the Birmingham and Glasgow gigs after suffering from a virus several weeks ago.
After calling off last night’s show at Manchester’s AO Arena, Sam wrote on their Instagram story: “Today in soundcheck I felt fine and was so excited to give Manchester an amazing show tonight, with a special surprise at the end.
“During my third song, I noticed something wrong with my voice. I prayed it was just my voice waking up for the show but into the fourth song I could feel something was really wrong.”
The pop singer added: “I came off stage and have tried everything to get my voice back in gear but it won’t.
“I am honestly heartbroken I couldn’t finish the show tonight for you all. I love you all. I’m sorry I’m sorry I’m sorry.”
Body found in river in search for missing 24-year-old woman
Shannon’s family have been informed
A body has been found in a river in the search for a missing woman from Lancashire.
Police searching for Shannon Canning from Lancaster say they have found a body. The 24-year-old had been missing from home since the early hours of Friday May 19th.
A search operation was launched to find the young woman who did not turn up for work at Tipple bar on Friday afternoon.
Public appeals for help were launched by her family and the police force, who said they were concerned for her welfare as the disappearance was out of character.
Lancashire Police have confirmed the body of a woman was found in the River Lune near Halton on Wednesday afternoon, May 24th. Shannon’s family has been informed.
Patrols were increased during the week and specialist divers joined the search yesterday. Officers were called at around 4.20pm Wednesday afternoon when the discovery was made.
A statement from Lancashire Police said: “Sadly, officers searching for missing Shannon Canning have an update, following a body recovered from the River Lune.
“We can confirm that we were called today (May 24th) at around 4:20pm to a report that a body had been found in the River Lune, near Halton.
“Specialist search teams have subsequently attended the area and can sadly confirm that the body of a woman has been recovered.
“Although formal identification has yet to take place, we believe the body to be that of missing Shannon Canning.
“Shannon’s family have been made aware of this sad development and our thoughts are with them at this upsetting time.”