The story so far…

Mendip cavers Fair – Timetable

Friday night Hunters Lodge Inn

20:00 to closing time – Social. Films and slides in the Long room. Bring along your own to show. CD, DVD, PC.

Saturday Priddy Village Hall – Regional meet.

09:00 Doors open – Refreshments available including Bacon butties, etc. Tea, Coffee, etc.

Club stands, displays, etc. 10:00 TBC 10:30 TBC 11:00 Break 11:30 TBC 12:00 Bar open 12:00 Redcliff – Alan Gray 12:45 Lunch 13:30 New archieve caving film footage - Maurice Hewins 14:00 Mendip Ochre Mining – Alan Gray 14:30 Break 15:00 Rods Pot – Andy Sparrow 15:30 MCRA – Alan Gray & Paul Stilman 16:00 Finish

MCR Barbecue outside Village hall from 16:00

Wessex Challenge on Top Green – Start at 17:30

MCR Stomp in hall after – Entry free.

Bar shuts midnight(ish)


SRT surgery at
SRT race at the Wessex
MCR coffee morning and rescue store open at the Belfry

Les Williams
Conservation & Access Officer
Posted 9/6/2010

Posted 7/5/10

The boulders in Swildon's entrance seem to have stabilised. Please take care in this area and report any concerns (my contact details can be found at Officers) There is a relatively stable route through the boulders to the easy way down but it ends over the new hole in the floor. It is passable with care. The land owner is aware of the changes.

Les Williams
Conservation & Access Officer
Posted 27/11/2009

There have been more movements in Swildon's Entrance, this time just inside the entrance. The water has undermined some of the slabs and it was necessary to ease them down into a safer position. This whole area is still unstable and needs to be watched. Please treat it with respect.

The slope to the left of the climb down is currently blocked and because of the hole, the climb down is quite committing. If anyone is struggling with the climb a less exposed and easier route is to use the rift at the start of the Zig Zags (Turn right in the entrance, brings you out in Showerbath Chamber). Please take care, the whole entrance area down as far as Showerbath is unstable.

Les Williams
Conservation & Access Officer
Posted 25/11/2009

There have recently been changes in the Swildon's entrance area. A hole has opened up immediately below the low crawl/slide just in from the entrance that is used by lots of cavers to avoid the awkward climb. This hole goes all the way down to Showerbath Chamber and will catch the unwary. In Showerbath Chamber itself a large amount of gravel and rocks has accumulated from this run in and the stream is using this new route instead of flowing down the usual route to the Wet Way.

There have also been some boulder movements in Showerbath and a large volume of the stream is flowing down Baptism Passage to the Short Dry Way. It appears that major changes are happening in the entrance series so please take extra care here.

Les Williams
Conservation & Access Officer
Posted 5/11/2009

Following some high CO2 measurements taken during the week, Cuckoo Cleeves has been closed until the air quality improves. Monitoring will take place over the next week or two and the cave will be reopened as soon as possible. Please stay away until the cave has been reopened.

Les Williams
Conservation & Access Officer
Posted 22/8/2009

On behalf of CSCC a group of people gave up a lot of their time to stabilise the boulders in Goatchurch Cavern. The works were carried out over several weeks and finally on the 29th of November a group of about 10 people (plus some press ganged outdoor groups) carried 600kg of cement and aggregate into the cave where it was mixed into concrete and poured into pre-constructed channels to form lintels. The works are now complete and the passage that leads towards the Drainpipe has been stabalised.

CSCC would like to thank all those that helped with the works and also to everybody else who used the cave over the past few weeks for their understanding.

Les Williams
C&A Officer
Posted 6/12/2008

The loose boulder in Rods Pot has been “carefully lowered to the floor” and can now be considered safe. Please still take care here as it may not be the only loose boulder in the area.

Les Williams
CSCC C&A Officer
Posted 6/12/2008

The Sump 1 rope, reported at the beginning of the month as frayed, has now been replaced.

David Cooke
Posted 20/11/2008

There has been a report of a loose boulder in Rods Pot

“Close to the start of Rod’s there is a choice of a tight rift to the left or a high level route to the right. The right hand route has an exposed step down over a rift in the floor. When I went back to collect the rope from Purple Pot I took the high right route and used the same hand-hold in the roof as I did on our first descent. This time it moved! It looks like a block of the ceiling has come away but is trapped by the surrounding rock. The hand-hold is on one end of the block and, when used, causes the whole block to pivot. When it moved, I was already committed and had most of my weight on it. When I let it go, it shot back up accompanied by an almighty bang – which I think may have caused the block to crack. I’d estimate the block probably weighs about 5 tonne and it would certainly cause a fatal injury to anyone underneath it should it fall. It is very easy to spot as it is the rock immediately in front of you as you come out over the drop. It has a sort of Y-shape protrusion pointing at you that looks like a perfect hand-hold.”

Please take care until it is checked out

Les Williams
Posted 17/11/08

A day to Celebrate and Remember Tony Jarratt

The Digs

  • Rolling Thunder – Swildon’s - Meet Aubrey Newport at the Wessex Hut at around 10:30 on the Saturday. Aubrey says: “There is plenty to do in Rolling Thunder. We have made the spoil - it just needs moving!”
  • White Pit - Meet Stuart Gardiner at the Belfry at 10:00 on Saturday
    • Stuart's plans are: digging at the terminal sump or at the end of Talus II.
    • Dry gear needed, ladder climbing / no SRT.
  • Caine Hill – Meet Trevor and the team at the site from 10:00 onwards on the Saturday
  • Rose Cottage has unfinished biz-the dig in Halfway – Meet Phil Coles at the Belfry 10:00
  • Stock's House Mine Shaft – Meet Tangent at 10:00 Belfry
    • Please note: Entry is via a 20m deep shaft: so will require rigging ladder + lifeline / or SRT / self lining kit.
  • Wigmore Home Close - Meet Tony Audsley and team at the site from 10am up to early afternoon.
    • Please note: parking arrangements not made yet, but unless you hear otherwise, it would be best to park as for Wigmore and walk over the field.
  • Templeton Open Morning – Templeton will be manned from 10 – 12am, during which time the lights will be on, and the pumps running.
    • It is intended to have a skip run.
    • Visitors are welcome to make their way to the bottom – oversuits, boots, helmets and lights will be needed. In view of flooding, there is unlikely to be any digging.
    • NOTE: The farmer has requested that no-one drives to the site.
    • John Hill will run visitors to the dig in his Land Rover, meet at the East Somerset Hut (by Eastwater Cavern field entrance) at 10am.
    • Otherwise, walk up from Lower Pitts farm (turn right out of Eastwater Lane, farm is first on left after ¼ mile.) Walk up track, dig is in last field on left before Dursdon Drove. Look for the spoil heap!
  • It is possible that there may be a “tour of Hunters' Lodge Inn Sink” if there is enough demand. There are currently no digs ongoing in HLIS

Contact me if you propose to attend one or more of these digs so I can keep the diggers informed as to numbers. Les W

JRAT’s Ashes

A portion of the ashes are to be spread down the entrance of Hunters Lodge Sink, at around 1430 on the Saturday afternoon. The final portion is to be taken by way of the Minneries and The Five Buddles and the other digs in that location enroute to North Hill for spreading of the ashes at about 1530. It is hoped that Tony’s family, and other friends who didn’t make it to the original funeral service will all attend.

The intention is give a portion of the ashes to the Wigmore team to take into the streamway in Wigmore either for Saturday 15th or when they next go down Wigmore.

Some of Tony’s ashes are now in Scotland at the Grampian Hut awaiting the first through trip in RANA Hole.

Films and Talk at Village Hall

The intention is after the ashes are spread on North Hill to make our way to the village hall for the films at around 1600. Tea and Coffee and cake will be available. If you are still thirsty from lunch-time the bar will be open at the village hall.

We plan to have some big display boards in the hall so please send digital copies to Stuart (Mac) McManus or bring copies of any photos, articles or anything you’d like to put on the boards at the village.

Films will include those made by Fraser Simpson of the GSG and shown at Hidden Earth with extras from this years Grampian Dinner.

Films and excerpts from a series of TV films which included JRAT over the years by Steve Sharp, Alan Gray, and Tony Boycott

Alan Gray will give a short talk on JRAT’s log books and some of the amazing statistics on his period of caving over 44 years.

Drinking and Eating. 18:30 - 19:30

There’ll be a pig roast and Beef at £2.50 per roll. Food will be available until about 9pm or until it runs out!

JRAT’s Land-Rover Auction. 19:30 – 19:45

JRAT’s bright red land-rover is to be auctioned at the village hall by the “furry jacket brothers” Mac and Martin Grass. There is a reserve.

Songs, and Anecdotes 19:30 – 22:00

Various singers, speakers, musicians to while the night away. With breaks for more beer and chats. If there is demand some of the Films shown earlier will be repeated. If you want to say something contact Rachael Clarke on 01749 678754.

Late Evening 22:00 – midnight:

Dancing and a Tony-dance-alike competition bring a rose (paramedics will be in attendance) bring your old 45’ to be played by the BEC’s own resident DJ Paul Brock!

Les Williams
Posted 14/11/2008

It has been reported that the Sump 1 rope is frayed, care should be taken here until it is replaced. If you are planning a trip through the sump soon then if you contact the right people a length of rope may well be donated to a good cause so that “persons unknown” can replace it.

If you're unsure who the “right people” are then a good place to start is here

Les Williams
Posted 3/11/2008

A day to Celebrate and Remember Tony Jarratt


Visits to various Cave dig sites:–

  • Wigmore
  • Caine Hill
  • Hunters Lodge Inn Sink
  • Templeton
  • Rolling Thunder ( Swildons)
  • Tumbledown (Swildons V)
  • White Pit
  • Rose Cottage

And many more……More updates on the digs later

Contact Les Williams on 01749 679839 or 07941029707


Priddy Village Hall will be open from 3:30 pm with a bar and tea/coffee available.

We plan to have some big display boards in the hall so please send digital copies to Stuart (Mac) McManus or bring copies of any photos, articles or anything you’d like to put on the boards at the village hall.

4.00 to 6.30 – Alan Gray, Fraser Simpson and others are putting together a collection of films, TV clips and your digital pictures of Tony.

6.30 to 7:30 – Drinking and Eating.

There’ll be a pig roast and Beef at £2.50 per roll.

We have no idea how many people will come but we hope there’ll be enough for everyone.

Food will be available until about 9pm.

We plan to have some entertainment throughout the evening but there’ll be a tent outside the hall and hopefully plenty of opportunity to meet and talk as well as enjoying the entertainment.

Early Evening – music, songs, anecdotes and more beer!

Contact Rachael if you’d like to sing, play or speak. or phone 01749 678754

Late Evening – dancing and a Tony-dance-alike competition (paramedics will be in attendance)

Keep checking the BEC web site and your own club sites for updates.

Les Williams
Posted 21/10/2008

Boulders have recently moved in Goatchurch Cavern, in the Water Chamber at the top end by the passage to the Drainpipe and also down the passage towards the Drainpipe.

CSCC is carrying out stabilisation works in this area. Please take care here and avoid the passage to the Drainpipe for the duration of the works. Please note that the boulder slope down from the Water Chamber is very loose as it has been undermined by the stream. Concreting works will be undertaken shortly.

Les Williams
CSCC C&A Officer
Posted 4/10/2008

A weekend of events and entertainment for Mendip cavers.

This weekend gives you the opportunity learn something new, do some caving, have some fun, and party, party, party! So - get yourself along and spread the word around your caving friends. Let's make it a good one!

Friday Evening

  • Films and photos in the Long Room Hunter's Lodge Inn. If you have stuff to show, bring it along. DVD’s and CD’s or computer files. Starts around 8pm.


  • BCRA Regional Meet. Talks and lectures in Priddy Village Hall. Food and Drink from 9am. Presentations on: Upper Flood Swallet, Withybrook Slocker, Historic Films, Templeton, East Twin Swallet, Mendip Cave Rescue, Mendip Cave Registry and Archive and more.
  • Possibility of trips into the more restricted systems of Mendip.

Saturday Evening

  • Wessex Challenge. 5pm Top green. Teams of 6. You will need some form of chariot to convey one of your team members. There are very few rules but the following must be adhered to:
  1. Teams of up to 6 persons including a charioteer.
  2. Chariot must be capable of carrying 1 person and a container of water (container supplied by us)
  3. The charioteer and the container MUST NOT leave the chariot.
  4. The course must be followed.
  5. The winners will be decided by a combination of time taken and quantity of water remaining at the finish line.
  • BBQ provided by Mendip Cave Rescue.
  • Cavers Stomp in the Village Hall. Live music provided by Loose Change.
  • Late Bar


  • MCR Rescue Store Open Day and kit demonstrations.
  • Training. Region Council training above and below ground. Courtesy Andy Sparrow.

Mendip Caving 2008 is an event co-ordinated by the Council of Southern Caving Clubs (CSCC) Contributing bodies include the British Cave Research Association (BCRA), Mendip Cave Rescue (MCR formerly MRO) and Mendip Cave Clubs.

Posted 22/5/08. Updated 6/6/08

There will be training available on Sunday [not Saturday] free of charge. Places will be limited and may have to be shared out between clubs if over subscribed.

This session will be in the Dry Ways of Swildons and is intended for the less experienced caver. We will look at basic knots, handlines and lifelines.
From 9.30 - 1300.

For SRT users with their own kit who have had some basic training and would like to improve their techniques or learn how to deal with problems and emergencies.
From 1400 - 1700


Posted 6/6/08 Andy Sparrow

CSCC Webmaster, Cookie, puts the Wiki-style CSCC Website online for a test run.

CSCC Chairman
Posted 20/5/2008

The following was issued by the CSCC on the 18th April:


Update: Wednesday 18 April

A posting to this list [UKForum] on April 9 explained that Eco-anchors in Rhino Rift and Hunters Hole had failed axial pull tests and that other caves would need to be tested.

Three more caves have now been tested:

GB Cave: where 2 of the 4 anchors at the Ladder Dig Extension FAILED but the testers recommend all 4 be replaced;

Thrupe Lane: where 3 of the 5 anchors on the Entrance Pitch FAILED; (there are 7 anchors in the High Atlas area that have not been re-tested since 2001 for which testing is overdue)

Swildons: where ALL 3 of the anchors at the Twenty Pitch PASSED. (but the 14 anchors in the Cowsh Avens area mention in the April 9 posting have not yet been re-tested)

Failed anchors have been tagged and put beyond use. Please do not interfere with the measures taken to put these bolts beyond use.

The CCC will advise its members about the access situation with regard to GB, but it is hopeful - as is CSCC - that sufficient of the presently approved anchors and resin can be sourced from other regions to allow the 4 anchors to be replaced sooner rather than later.

Thrupe Lane remains open since creative rigging of the entrance, or other methods, still permit ingress/egress.

The failed anchor in Rhino Rift that sparked the present problems has now been removed - along with some of the surrounding rock - by stitch drilling for closer examination. The hole left has been filled.

The CSCC and members of the BCA Equipment & Techniques Committee continue to work hard on the issue. To date over 30 man hours has been spent underground, along with a considerable amount of above ground technical discussion, record checking, etc. All those involved are unpaid volunteers.

Steve King
Hon. Secretary
Council of Southern Caving Clubs

Posted 3/5/2007

The following was issued by the CSCC on the 8th April:


Update: Sunday 8 April

Many CSCC Members will, by now, be aware that there was an incident in Rhino Rift on 25 March (reported the following day) whereby a sizeable piece of resin motar came away from one of the Y-hang anchors on the first pitch whilst a caver was on rope. Fortunately the caver was unharmed, and the anchor remained in place.

At the request of the Charterhouse Caving Company the CSCC immediately launched an investigation. In this they have had the full support of the BCA Equipment & Techniques Committee.

The anchor in question was subjected to an approved load test (6 kN axial pull which must be sustained for 15 seconds) and it failed. This was highly significant, because it was the first known failure of an eco-anchor placed under the NCA (now BCA) national bolt placement scheme. The ramifications are wide-ranging and will impact cavers acrosss the country. It is consequently essential that the ensuing investigation is both thorough and taken seriously.

The intitial investigations have generated some 'working hypotheses' as to the mode of failure of the anchor. By correlating these with the CSCC anchor installation records it became apparent that there were several other sites on Mendip where the anchors might also give cause for concern. These sites are: Hunters Hole, the Cowsh Avens in Swildons, the Ladder Dig Extension in GB Cave, and Split Rock Quarry. All these sites will need to be tested. Other Mendip caves with eco-anchors will also be tested for comparison. There is thus a lot of work to do in the coming months.

At the time of writing Hunters Hole has been tested. Of the 21 installed anchors, the location of 5 prevented the mechanical pull tester from being applied. Of the remaining 16 anchors, 8 passed the test (though the resin on 2 of these cracked), and 8 failed. The failed anchors have been tagged and notices have been placed in the cave. Roger Dors has been informed. Until remedial work can be undertaken it would be best if cavers do not visit Hunters Hole. Please check with Roger before descending.

To discourage through trips into Swildons 4 from using the untested eco-anchors in Cowsh Avens, the CSCC has today changed the lock and put a notice on Priddy Green Sink. If you really, really, want to do PGS then you will need to get the new key from either Alison Moody or Brian Prewer (Wessex CC). Until further notice cavers should also refrain from climbing Cowsh Avens from the Swildons 4 streamway and then using the untested eco-hangers to return.

The CCC will be placing their own controls on GB Cave.

Until further notice the CSCC advises against the use of any eco-hangers in Split Rock Quarry.

For a number of reasons it will probably be some months before the failed anchors can be replaced. The CSCC understands the frustration that this will cause cavers and asks for their understanding. The CSCC is also aware that some will view our actions/recommendations as an 'over-the-top' reaction. All we can say in response is that we are acting on the best collective advice at our disposal. Cavers should also be wary of ill-informed speculation and gossip as to the possible causes of the anchor problems. At present only a very small group of people are in possesion of ALL the facts.

Further information will be disseminated through this email list, the CSCC website (though please note, the webmaster is in Matienzo for another week!), and the BCA website.

This message was posted to the UKCaving Forum last night.

Steve King, CSCC Secretary
Chris Binding, CSCC Conservation & Access Officer
Alan Gray, CSCC Chairman

Posted 3/5/2007

The following has been received from the Charterhouse Caving Company on the 31st March:


A defect anchor report in Rhino Rift was made on UKCaving forum at 1 am 26 March. The report stated that a piece of resin from the final anchor in the series for rigging the first pitch had come away into the hand of a person on the pitch. Andrew Atkinson responded to the report by visiting the cave that evening at around 5 pm 26 March and inspecting Eco Anchor RR-FP-06.

His inspection of the rock surrounding the anchor found a new crack radiating away from the anchor to the right. He started to subject the anchor to an axial pull out test (sustain for 15 seconds a 6 kN force) as recommended by British Standard. It became clear to Andrew that on subjecting the anchor to a 6 kN force, the anchor started to move outwards. He therefore decided to increase the force on the anchor to 10 kN (the maximum force which the puller can apply). The anchor then moved out a full 5 mm under this force, stopped and then withstood the 10 kN force for far more than 15 seconds. Further attempts to pull the anchor out using a scaffold pole and clip failed to move the anchor. He rightly reported the anchor as failed since it initially did not sustain the 6 kN force; even though after the 5 mm movement it subsequently was able to withstand a 10 kN force.

Andrew Atkinson (as CSCC bolting coordinator), Chris Binding (as CSCC C&A Officer), Graham Mullan (as Company Secretary of CCC Ltd who control access to the cave), Linda Wilson (as CCC Conservation Officer and CCC Ltd's and BCA's pro bono Legal Advisor), Les Sykes (as the creator of the NCA now BCA Eco Anchor scheme), Andy Pryke (as chairman of BCA Equipment committee) and Nick Williams (as BCA Insurance Manager) have been discussing the information which Andrew brought back and consulting with other people, including one of those who installed the Eco Anchors and other experts. As a preliminary step, they decided to restrict access to the cave whilst this work went on.

Whilst this has taken a little while (and some effort), the following points can now be stated.

1. The new crack means that the anchor location cannot be reused. The orientation of the crack is on the right hand side of the anchor and is away from the near by location of anchor RR-FP-05. However, both anchors lie on the same bedding line. A judgement has yet to made on whether anchor RR-FP-05 is unaffected by the new crack.

2. Photographic evidence has been obtained of the Eco Anchor state before and after the event. It clearly shows that some resin has come away which was not only that on the surface, but also down into the hole for a distance of 5 to 10 mm.

3. The mode of failure of the Eco Anchor is unusual and has not been experienced before within the BCA Anchor Scheme. It is emphasised that whilst Eco Anchors normally fail by being pulled out of the resin, this occurs well above 40 kN force. (Information on what loads Eco Anchors can sustain is shown in Annex 5 of the document “Anchors and Installation Regime” downloadable from the BCA web site at .) Although various possible causes can be put forward to explain the findings, further work is scheduled to take place to see if any more information can be obtained from the failed anchor, including possibly extracting the anchor and its surrounding rock.

4. All of the 16 Eco Anchors within Rhino Rift were placed by one team using one batch of resin on one day. There has been anecdotal comment about movement in the Eco Anchors installed in Rhino Rift. In response to such a claim in January 2007, all of the Eco Anchors were subjected to the 6 kN axial pull out test. They all passed the test without any problems.

5. There is no clear understanding of why this anchor recently failed, even though it passed the test only 2 months ago. The view of the group is that it cannot state with confidence that the other Eco Anchors might not also be similarly affected. Although the group notes that the failed anchor did eventually sustain a 10 kN force, it remains of the view that access to the cave should remain restricted until either an explanation can be obtained so as to enable the affected anchors to be replaced or that all of the Eco Anchors are replaced.

6. The loss of the anchor location RR-FP-06 on the pitch creates a number of problems in placing a replacement. The possible loss of the adjacent anchor location RR-FP-05 could substantially affect the rigging of the first pitch.

7. Comment has been made by some persons that perhaps repeated testing of the Eco Anchors might have weakened them. It is noted that the 6 kN test would not have been adopted by the British Standard (BS 7883:2005) if there was any possibility of such a weakness occurring. The group has consulted with an expert who is of the opinion that such anchors should easily sustain a 10 kN force without causing damage. The group has therefore concluded that there is no basis for such a comment.

G Mullan
CCC Ltd Company Secretary
Saturday 31 March 2007

Posted 3/5/2007

The message below was issued by the Charterhouse Caving Company on the 28th March:

The background to the decision is that last weekend a caver experienced an alarming incident whilst rigging the first pitch; some of the resin mortar fixing one of the P-bolts came away in a chunk. The individual involved was unharmed, and the bolt is still in place. However, it failed a subsequent load test. A crack in the resin affixing one of the other bolts was also reported.

These bolts were last tested on January 15th and passed.

In the meantime the CCC and CSCC will be looking to ascertain whether this is an unfortunate one-off occurrence, something symptomatic of a wider problem (eg, with the resin), or the result of other actions. In this we are being supported by BCA technical experts.

It cannot be stressed how unusual this incident is and it is for this reason that we must try and ensure that any lessons that can be learnt, are learnt.

From: Graham Mullan

Dear CCC Club Reps

Having discussed the matter of the unsafe bolt in Rhino Rift with Nick Williams, in his role as BCA Insurance Officer, it is his recommendation that we should effectively shut the cave whilst the situation is evaluated.

This will take a matter of a few weeks. Hopefully no longer. I have relayed this to Linda, our legal adviser, and she concurs with Nick's advice.

I shall therefore arrange for a replacement padlock to go on the cave tomorrow morning. Anyone with a strong wish to go down the cave during this period would then need to come to me for a key and a detailed description of the problems inherent in undertaking a trip.

Nick agreed that this was the best compromise that we could put in place immediately.

Please ensure that anybody within your club who issues keys is aware of this, so that no-one has a wasted trip over to the cave.

CCC Secretary

Posted 3/5/2007

The CSCC undertook a major project to cap Star Shaft Mine which was rediscovered when the farmers tractor fell through the old timber capping.

To read more about it see Star Shaft Mine Capping.

Posted 3/5/2007

The second bolt of the first Y-hang has previously been reported loose - See old news items 5 & 12th December 2005 here.

The bolt has been tested with the recently purchased regional lateral pull testing equipment. This places a lateral load of 10KN on the bolt for twenty seconds. The bolt and has been passed as fit for use. So, although it wobbles we can be sure it won't leave the rock. The remaining bolts in Rhino Rift have also been passed fit for use.

Posted 13/7/2006

After a visit on the 9th July the C & A Officer reports that the Spits on Lateral Pitch are in a poor state with one of them having a stripped thread meaning that rigging here is compromised. It is intended to place eco-hangers here. The installation should be done by this Autumn. Further details will be posted when the work is complete.

The schedual of works also include putting bolts at the head of Perseverence Pot, bolting of new route(s) in old Atlas and replacing spits wherever it is considered wise to do so.

Posted 13/7/2006

This year fourteen clubs didn't renew their membership with the CSCC. This is the greatest drop in membership the CSCC has ever experienced and is very worrying. With the creation of BCA and the new insurance scheme there have been considerable changes in the way the subs. are collected, no doubt leading to considerable confusion. If you are one of the missing clubs, we would like to know why? Please let the Secretary know so that the problems can be addressed in the future.

Please note that it is still possible to rejoin the CSCC (but not the BCA) in the traditional way. Simply send a cheque for £15 with a covering letter to CSCC Treasurer, Chris Whale, 247 Coronation Road, Southville, Bristol, BS3 1RL.

The missing clubs are: Avon & Somerset Constabulary Club (Caving Section), Avon Outdoors Activities Club, Barnet Caving Group, Combined Services Caving Association, Cotham Speleological Society, Exeter University Speleological Society, Forest Caving Group, Hewlett Packard Caving Club, Kingsdown and Outs, Slough Mountaineering Club (Caving Section), South London Speleo, Surrey Youth Caving Group, Thurrock Adventure Club and University of Portsmouth Caving Club.

Although much of the work of the CSCC isn't particularly visible or tangible, it is important. For that work to continue the CSCC needs the support of the caving community, which means a healthy rather than a declining membership.

Posted 2/12/2005

After many years the CSCC Handbook and Access Guide has been reprinted. It runs to 36 A5 pages, has been fully revised and contains all the latest access information. Copies can be obtained from Bat Products or by post from David Cooke, 3 Starrs Close, Axbridge, Somerset, BS26 2BZ. Please enclose a cheque for £2.50 made payable to the 'CSCC'.

Posted 2/12/2005

An engraving that is possibly 10,000 years or more old has been discovered in Aveline's Hole. Aveline's is famous as being the site of the earliest known cemetery in the British Isles.

A gate has been installed in the back of the cave to protect the engraving. This was after consultations between English Heritage and other interested parties, including the landowner, English Nature and the CSCC. No visits will be possible until bat hibernation season is over. Access is controlled by the UBSS.

Full details can be found on the UBSS website here.

Posted 19/2/2005

The costs of BCA Membership and BCA Insurance for 2005 is now known and that subscriptions and premiums are due. The insurance premiums have remained at the 2004 level, and it is no longer necessary for individuals who are members of more than one BCA Member Club to pay multiple premiums because of their additional memberships. Club subscriptions to the BCA are now banded based on the number of members in the club.

The necessary forms may be found on the BCA Website


The attention of Clubs that were CSCC Members in 2004 is drawn to the following points:

Your BCA Insurance for 2004 expired on January 31st 2005.

Although the CSCC will continue to honour your existing affiliation until the CSCC AGM on May 7th 2005, if your Club wishes to continue to affiliate to the CSCC it must either:

a. Join the BCA and stipulate the CSCC as its “Primary Region”. There will be no additional charge as BCA funds your membership. Or

b. Join the BCA but write to the CSCC Secretary stating that it wishes to affiliate to the CSCC as a “Secondary Region”. There will be a charge of £3 payable to CSCC to cover the cost of minutes etc., the rest is funded by BCA. Or

c. Not join the BCA but write to the CSCC Secretary stating that it wishes to affiliate directly to the CSCC. There will be a charge of £15 payable to CSCC to cover your cost of membership as it is not funded by BCA.

All three options above give your club the full benefits of CSCC membership including a vote at CSCC meetings. Only options 2(a) and 2(b) give your club the full benefits of BCA membership including a vote at BCA meetings

It is not necessary for BCA Member Clubs to affiliate to the CSCC in order to gain access to CSCC-controlled caves since the CSCC recognises all bona-fide caving clubs, BCA members or not. But they will need to affiliate to the CSCC if they wish to have or retain “a voice” in the region. Conversely, Clubs that choose not to join the BCA may wish to affiliate to the CSCC in order to keep themselves appraised of regional policies and access changes.

NB The above charge for options 2(b) and 2© are to be ratified by the AGM in May.

Posted 19/2/2005

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