VIDEO: Look back to when this Peak District disaster gripped the country

Volunteers took roped, machinery and oxygen tanks down the caves in a huge effort to save Neil Moss in 1959. (Image: British Path/YouTube)
Volunteers took roped, machinery and oxygen tanks down the caves in a huge effort to save Neil Moss in 1959. (Image: British Path/YouTube)
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Almost 60 years ago, military and civil groups gathered in Castleton to try and save a man trapped in a Derbyshire cave.

This vintage footage from British Pathé shows a 1950s news reel of when the Peaks Pothole disaster bought together hundreds of volunteers in 1959.

Oxford Student Neil Moss, 20, had ventured deep into the Pea Cavern at Castleton and mountain rescue teams, the RAF and navy personnel all came to the Peaks village in an attempt to rescue the young man, who was said to have delved far deeper than the public paths and become trapped in a crevice 1.5 miles from the surface and 1,000 feet deep.

The search party reached him and came 'almost within touching distance' of him and stayed with the man for 14 hours, but sadly he was so badly lodged between the rocks that he died with rescuers nearby.

The sleepy village of Castleton was turned into a hive of activity.

The sleepy village of Castleton was turned into a hive of activity.

RAF flight attendant John Carter was with the man before he died. (Image: British Path/YouTube)

RAF flight attendant John Carter was with the man before he died. (Image: British Path/YouTube)