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Firefighters rescue teenager stuck up 50ft tree after he climbed it to save cat

Emergency crews spent more than two-and-a-half hours trying to get the 13-year-old out of the tree

A teenage boy had to be rescued from a tree after he got stuck 40ft up it - trying to save a cat.

Emergency crews spent two-and-a-half hours rescuing 13-year-old Bradley Gander after he came unstuck trying to bring a pet cat to safety.

Bradley began scaling the tree on Friday afternoon after he spotted his neighbour's pet cat Tilly stuck high in the branches of the 50ft tall tree.

As he began to climb towards the meowing cat, he soon realised the tree was not secure enough and was forced to call for help - for himself.

The feline had been in the tree for one day and the brave teenager decided to rescue his her in Haywards Heath, West Sussex.

Bradley's mother, Lorraine Gander, hailed the work of firefighters after they spent nearly two and a half hours rescuing him.

The 31-year-old said: "He said he was going to the shop and then two minutes later the neighbour who lives up the road came round saying 'Bradley is up a tree'.

"He was 40ft up a skinny and flimsy tree - every time he tried to climb down the branches would snap.

"We said 'what are you doing up a tree' and he said he had heard a cat.

"He was 40ft up the tree and the cat was right at the top - about 50ft up in the air.

"People had gathered around the tree and they were all scared for Bradley.

"He wasn't scared, though. He was more concerned about the cat and kept shouting 'what about the cat?'

"He loves animals and obviously saw that the cat was distressed and tried to help it."

West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service (WSFRS) initially attended with ladders but could not prop them up as the tree was too unstable.

They then drafted in another team from East Sussex with a cherry-picker, but they could not get close enough.

In the end the team from WSFRS used rope rescue units to retrieve Bradley and Tilly.

At the same time, elsewhere in the county East Sussex Firefighters were looking for a cat trapped beneath floorboards in Hove and were saving a squirrel stuck up a telegraph pole in Brighton.

Ms Gander, a full-time mother of five, added: "I was shocked he had managed to climb that high, it was only a thin tree."

"Everyone was relieved when he was back down and there was a big crowd.

"We were all worried about him but all he was worried about was the cat and he was like 'yeah, but what about the cat?'"

Tilly was rescued two hours after Bradley when the crew managed to grab her and return her to her owner.

Thanks to Mirror.co.uk.

Last modified on Wednesday, 23 September 2015 14:35