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Simonds Mine. Biddlecomee - a Re-Discovery Feb 1991

Went over to look at a site Graham Johnson had been digging about 10 years ago.  We decided not to continue with this but to excavate a filled shaft in the floor with marks (shot-holes) of the "Old man". Three of us, Graham, Robin Taviner and Vince Simmonds went over on the 12th Feb and cleared about 4ft. of easily removed rocks.  We returned a week later (19.2.91) with a skip and some more muscle power, J'Rat and Rich Blake.  We hadn't been digging long when we made an intriguing discovery, 2 star drills and a slater's hammer with a length of nylon rope and an old, battered biscuit tin. We tried to fit the star drills to some of the shot holes, they didn't fit, and then enlightenment!  Above the pit, barely discernable, was an ancient carbide inscription "BEC DIG" and around a rock "NT 1974". We had found the legendary Nigel Taylor's long lost digging kit.  We had thought of cleaning them up and presenting them to Wells Museum but decided to re-unite them to their owner who was thrilled to see them again which prompted reminiscences of solo digging trips.

The nylon rope came in handy when J'Rat's car (one of Wilfs courtesy numbers) broke down and we had to tow it back to the Hunters, which is happily on the way back to Wilfs garage.

On the 26.2.91 we (Tav. Graham & Vince) reached a solid floor at about 8ft depth and decided that was as far as we could go, so we cleared all our gear out and called it a day.

Meets List

A. Sat May 18th.                       Wookey Hole Evening. 6pm – Belfry.  Leader - Martin Grass.

B. Sat June 15th.                      Penyghent Pot. Yorkshire.  Contact Andy Sparrow.

C. Fri 14th June - Sun 30th June.            France: Pyrenees & Dordogne.  Caving, Walking. Climbing Etc. Contact J.R. Price.

D. P.S.M. July.                         Details from Dany Bradshaw.

E. Sat 17th August.                   Birks Fell Cave.  Yorkshire.

F. Sat 24th. August.                  Otter Hole.  Chepstow.   Names to J.R. Price.

G. 21st September.                   Lost John's.  Yorkshire

H. 16th November.                     Juniper GulfYorkshire

I. 8th December.                       Peak Cavern.  Derbyshire.  Min 15 places - Names to J.R.P rice.

Also Devon weekend July 12th - 14th.  For further details contact Jeff Price.  Tel: 0272 724296

Coming Events

June 1st. Wessex Challenge.  Organised by ACG this year.  The theme is Star Trek and there will be a Starship Race.  The venue is Priddy Village Hall at 7pm.  Price £4 inc. food - tickets from ACG.

30th June - 5th July. N.A.M.H.O. Conference.   Llechwedd Slate Caverns.

13th - 14th July.  British Cave Rescue Conference, Derbyshire.  Contact D Gough, 26 The Lodge, Newthorpe, Notts.

19th 26th August. RESCON  '92.  International Cave Rescue Convention. SWCC Hut, Penwyllt, S. Wales