List of Members 1949. No. 7.

Iain H.McFadyen,               Ravenswood, 161 Raleigh Rd Ashton Bristol.
Miss Mary Osborne,           27 Addison Grove, Taunton, Somt.
Ken C. Dobbs,                   55 Broadfield Road, Bristcl. 4.
Omar G. Taylor,                 124 Kennington Ave, Bristol. 7.
Derek Wood,                     113 Conygre Grove, Filton Bristol.
Tony Bamber,                    135 Hornby Road, Blackpool, Lancs.
Miss Margaret Pope,          47 Filton Grove, Horfield, Bristo1.7.
Mrs Elizabeth Shorthose,    26 Gateside Road, Upper, Tooting, London.SW 17, (BALham 545).
Bernard A. Walker,             76 Willoughby Road, Langley, Slough, Bucks.
Mrs. Joan, D. Collins,         58 Beaconsfield Road, Mottingham , London, SE 9.
Mrs. Betty Corpe,               Priddy Hill Farm, Priddy, Nr Wells, Somt.
Herman Tearks,                         Webbington House, Loxton, Somt.
Miss Daphne Weeks          164 Sylvia Ave., Knowle, Bristol. 4.
Jack Waddon                     7 Haydon Road, Taunton, Somt.

Mendip Rescue Organisation

We Call to The attention of members, the following extract from the M.R.O.

Procedure to adopt in the event of an accident underground.

1.                   A member of the party will go to the nearest call-box and ring WELLS 97 (Police). Give number of call box and name of cave in which the accident has occurred.  He must then wait at callbox until rung by the rescue warden.

2.                   The Police will ring Wardens in rotation to the first warden in touch; they will give the name of the cave and the number of callbox.

3.                   The warden will phone callbox and ascertain the exact location of the accident, what injuries are known, and how much in party.  He will call out other wardens and Squad Leaders as necessary.

4.                   At the scene of the accident, the senior warden will take Charge.  In the event of the senior warden not being a doctor, he will collaborate with the doctor called out and follow his instructions in so far as to the treatment and removal of the injured.

5.                   The Wells or Bristol Ambulance will called only on the instructions of the Doctor.

M.R.O. will not be responsible for any expenses incurred.

Bristol Exploration Club Dance

The Social Committee of the B.E.C. are pleased to announce that a Dance will be held in St. MATTHEW’s PARISH HALL, REDFIELD, BRISTOL, on FRIDAY, October 21st, from 7.30 to 10.30.  Tickets, price 2/6 are available from any Social Committee member or from the Hon. Sec.  We look to all members to make this dance a success, and remind YOU, gentle reader, that you must help too.  If successful other similar functions will, we hope, be undertaken from time to time.  All profits (if any), will be diverted to the Hut Fund.

The Hon. Sec. Has Received the following letter: -

23 Banner Road.
      Bristol.6.                 22.3.49.

Dear Sir,

I wish to convoy to the French contingent of the Bristol Exploration Club my thanks for the splendid gesture made to me regarding their material appreciation of my small efforts to ensure a pleasant holiday.  The gift was entirely unlooked for in as much as I got enjoyment out of it but I would like to state of my disappointment that it wasn’t perfect.  I of course refer to the car hire people and the homeward journey. I went to their establishment and made your views known to them.

Yours Faithfully

George Hale.


If we run a trip next year we shall call on your good offices again.  We should like you to accompany us too.

London Section News

The London Section paid a mass visit to the Belfry during the last week in July, and a really enjoyable time was had by all, as the local newspapers would say.  The caving was not as energetic as some of the eastern brethren had planed as they often found that in the prevailing weather conditions the water to be found in the Mineries was much preferable to that of Stoke Lane.  Nevertheless, the new survey of Stoke has been virtually completed as far as the sump, and some length of new passage has been opened and plotted.  There were a couple of visits to the top series of Swildon’s, and two to G.B., where the new route proved a source of great delight to those used to the rigours of the Devil’s Elbow.  There were a number of attempts at photographic record, which gave rise to some mirth when viewed from a reasonable distance, but which led to some caustic remarks about the ability of one member to ignite flash powder.  He has promised to do better next time.

The week was somewhat enlightened, and the nerves of the local inhabitants were shattered by a couple of impromptu flying displays staged especially for our benefit by a certain R.A.F. type, who added to his achievements by occasionally forgetting that Stinkwheels and Harvards have little in common except an internal combustion.  We are happy to report the major casualties of the week were one pair of handlebars and three clutches.  We regret that the road to Wells via Rookham didn’t always prove adequate to our needs and expect the Somerset County Council to have the corners properly widened and banked before our next visit.  Which reminds the writer that all those who were present seem to think that the invasion should become an annual affair.  We must have enjoyed ourselves, or something.


Cavers in the Classics.

By Pie bono BEC.

Question.         “What should such fellows as I do crawling between heaven and earth?”

Hamlet. – Shakespeare.

Command.       “Amongst horrid shapes and shrieks, and sights unholy; find out some uncouth call.”

L’Allegro. – Milton.

Answer.           “For wine we follow Bacchus through the earth.”

Endemion.- Keats.

Stoke Lane.     “His body was bent double, feet and head coming together in life's pilgrimage.”

The Leech Gatherer. - Wordsworth.

Purgatory.        “O limed soul, that struggling to be free, art more engaged! Help, angels! make assay!”

Hamlet. - Shakespeare

Drainpipe.        “His words came feebly.  Choice word and measured phrase, above the reach of ordinary men.

The Leech Gatherer. – Wordsworth

Female Speleos  1. She was a Phantom of delight
                        When first she gleamed upon my sight,
                        A lovely Apparation, sent
                        To be a moment’s ornament.


2. Then flashed the living lightning from her eyes,
And screams of horror rent the affrighted skies.
The Rape of the Lock,


Any Suggestions?    “l (Thou) pourest thy full heart in profuse strains of unpremeditated art!”

Hamlet. - Shakespeare

Acetylene gives out.    “It smells to Heaven; it hath the primal eldest curse upon it”.

Hamlet. - Shakespeare

The “Hunters”. “Then to the spicy Nut-Brown Ale, with stories told of many a feat”.

L’Allegro. – Milton.

Ditto.                “While we sit bousing at the nappy An’ getting fou and unco happy”.

Tam O’Shanter.- Burns,

B.E.C. Members.          “And three chance human wanderers, in calm thought reflected, it appeared to me the type of a majestic intellect”.

An Ascent of Snowdon- Wordsworth.

Despoilers of caves.     “ ‘Tis nature’s Law

That none, the meanest of created things,
Of forms created the most vile and brute,
The dullest or most noxious, should exist
Divorced from good”.

The old Cumberland Beggar -Wordsworth,

Coming Back.  “The song seraphically free of taint of personality, so pure”.

The Lark Ascending-Meredith.

At the Belfry.    “Creatures that hang themselves up like an old rag to sleep”.

Bat- Lawrence.

Belfry Stew.     “Infinite numbers, delicacies, smells with hues on hues expression cannot paint”.

Spring- Thompson.

Llethrid Cave.

Coase has done it again.  The first to enter the Cave, a very short time ago, he led a party of B.E.C. on a Primary exploration there on the weekend of 24th. Sept., 1949.

This cave, which is situated about eight miles from Swansea and on the Gower peninsula, was opened by Don. Coase about a month before our trip took place.  The party for the weekend consisted of George Lucy, John Hay and Pat Ifold, Tony Setterington, Roger Cantle, Sybil Bowden-Lyle and Gwen Ifold.  The two ladies did not enter the cave.  The party met Don in Swansea and proceeded to Gower and changed at Llethrid Farm, from which the cave has taken its name.  We the approached the cave entrance which is situated in the stream bed at the top of the valley close by the far.

We entered through a pile of loose boulders and crawled in around the roots of a tree growing above.  The entrance is very similar to that of Eastwater, although one tends to crawl along rather than down.  The cave carries a large amount of loose debris which is carried down each year when the cave floods.

This boulder maze was easily negotiated and several short cuts were discovered.  We progressed for a couple of hundred feet and encountered a very tight and awkward squeeze.  This was enlarged with the aid of hammer and chisel and we then proceeded along several parallel rifts in turn connected at right angles by small creeps.  After another hundred feet or as we came into a small boulder filled chamber.  This was the farthest point reached by Don in his exploration.  Here the party split.  Don, George and Pat descended into very small passages extending from the bottom of the chamber, until halted by a constriction.   This was obviously a water filled passage.  The other three led by John Ifold explored a rising passage which led into a mud coated boulder chamber.  From here a steep slope through boulders led into the 1argest chamber of the system.  The floor of which consisted of a mud ridge rising to thirty odd feet above the floor.  This chamber is about 50 feet from the entrance and is about 60ft. long by 25ft. wide, by 40ft. high.

Climbing over the ridge and down the other side we came upon a mud pot and here the party halted, twelve foot deep six in diameter.  As there was some doubt of its climbability without a rope, John Ifold slid to the bottom and engineered a return route by kicking steps in the mud wall.

The rest of the party joined him at the bottom where they found themselves in a large stream passage.

Taking the right hand route which was down a stream, this passage varied in size from three feet to ten feet in height and six feet in width.  We proceeded for about 150 feet along it and then encountered water.  Four members of the party, continued down this water filled section.  We encountered the first duck and proceeded to the second.  Here Don led the way, followed by Roger Cantle.  On reaching dry land on the other side Don made a quick recce of the next duck and found it to be sump of unknown length and considerable depth.  The rest of the party were told not to come through and we about turned, returning along the dry passage.  We the headed back, with George leading, the whole party being wet and cold.

   Note.  This cave is similar to Stoke Lane in that there are loose rocks in abundance, much mud, and septic water.  It is also liable to severe flooding to depths of 20 feet or more throughout the whole system in time of even normal rainfall.  The total distance from entrance to the sump is in the region of 1,000 ft. without counting the side passages.  Coase is going to turn out a survey which will be printed when it arrives.

R.W.G. Cantle
G.T. Lucy


The end of the year approaches once again.  This brings to mind the thoughts of Committee Elections, and the A.G.M.  The first, preliminary is the nomination of members for the new Committee not later than 1st. November 1949.  We remind you that at the end of each year ALL officers in the club automatically cease to hold office and need nominations to take their place on the committee.  The present committee consists of: -T.H. Stanbury Hon. Sec. & Treas., R.A. Setterington, Hut Warden; D.H. Hasell, Hon. Editor B.B.; J.C. Weeks; A.M. Innes, Hon. Librarian; with D.A. Coase and Miss P. Richards as co-opted members.

T.H. Stanbury