‘Wonder pup’ survives 40ft plunge into former quarry

Darren Bedford with his dog Raya, who fell down a disused quarry behind the Old Brods rugby club at Hipperholme.
Darren Bedford with his dog Raya, who fell down a disused quarry behind the Old Brods rugby club at Hipperholme.
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A puppy had a miraculous escape after falling head first into a disused quarry in Hipperholme.

Raya, a four-month old labrador, was out for an evening stroll with her owner Darren Bedford behind Old Brodleians Rugby Club in Hipperholme last July.

Darren, of Brighouse, had taken his twin sons, Thomas and Jack, to rugby training and was throwing a ball on the land behind the Old Brods pitches when Raya went tumbling over the ledge of the quarry.

“As we were walking I couldn’t see that the quarry was there because of the lie of the land. I threw the ball for her once and she brought it back to me, so I threw it for her again,” Darren said.

“She chased after it and the next thing I saw were her back legs going over the top.”

Raya fell 40ft before landing on a rock ledge. She then continued to fall and finally came to rest in the shell of a burnt out car.

“I feared the worst,” Darren said. “I heard one yelp as she went over the top and then just silence.”

Darren ran down to the bottom of the quarry where two boys were playing.

“They shouted that there wasn’t much blood but when I got down there I was amazed to see that she was conscious,” he said.

“I dragged the car off her and she was holding her leg in the air, but otherwise she seemed OK.

“The lads told me they saw her fall head first and then bounce off a rock before falling through a tree.”

Darren rushed her to the vet, who confirmed that she had suffered no major injuries,

“She’s a wonder dog,” said Darren. “It’s a miracle she survived.”

Now Darren wants the council to put signs up to warn people about the quarry.

“I don’t want fences or gates put up, and I don’t want to stop kids going down into the quarry and playing down there because that’s what kids do,” he said.

“I think the council should put a sign up warning people about the drop there, but when I’ve tried speaking to them they haven’t been interested.

“I am a new dog owner who hadn’t walked the area before and had no idea the quarry was there. You can’t see it until you’re right on top of it.

“I know other dog owners have had some near misses in the past but something needs doing before there is a serious accident,” he said.