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The Editor apologises for the delay in issuing this BB. Owing to circumstances beyond my control this issue is almost three weeks late.

G.B. Guest Day

Easter Monday, 19th April is a guest Day for G.B. The time of decent is 3pm. If you wish to take part in this trip please notify Alfie Collins early, as the list has to be in the hands of the U.B.S.S. at least a week beforehand.

Lantern Slides

By Ken Dobbs

A custodian of the Club Lantern slides, my conscience has been pricking somewhat after Pongo’s items in earlier BB’s.

For those interested here is the state of the club slides to date:-

Swildons Hole.

22 in number. Mostly of the Old Grotto. 2 only below the 40. 2 of a gentleman named Broadbent (front & rear) near the ‘Bishop’. 4 at or near the entrance.

G B.

17 in number. We have a couple of the First Grotto and then there is a blank until we reach the Main Chamber. 3 only of the White Passage. (We could do with many more). 4 of the entrance.

Stoke Lane

8 in number. Although this is considered to be a ‘Club’ cave and has been much photographed we have only this number of slides.

Wookey Hole

9 in number. 2 of these are diagrams.

Eastwater

2 only in number. Both of the entrance.

Diagrams

4 in number. Showing

a) Mendip Plateau, Conglomerate at Wookey with a rough section of Eastwater.

b) The building up of a limestone area.

c) Theoretical plan and strata of a cave system.

d) Types of formation.

The building up of a library of caving slides would be a most desirable thing. Unfortunately the cost of photographing even one cave fully and then converting the results to slides would be prohibitive. It would also be wasteful as there must be scores of suitable negatives already in existence in members’ possession. A request was made about 3 years ago for members to loan any negatives they might have for this purpose. The Result was Negative!! Any way, Can I again appeal to members to lend these most desirable bits of celluloid?

Ken Dobbs.

Personal

To Postle and Dizzie Thompsett on Jan. 20th 1954, a son, Fabian, weight 7lbs. 6ozs.

How to increase Membership

By Chris Falshaw.

The bods at work had often asked to go caving, just hinting from time to time, that is. Then one fine day the bombshell came. “Laddie, you go caving, don’t you”? “Well--er, yes, I suppose I do”. “Well, when are you going to take us?” “Oh—er, when you like, sir”. (Old fool, little does he know). “Right-O, laddie, weekend after next do”? “Fair enough, sir”. (Stupid old clot).

That is how it happened. It started off that ten would definitely come. They were keen, much too keen, too keen by far. I decided on a top Swildons and during the next week did some explaining about conditions, clothing, water, etc. Then the rot set in; one bod had a date, another developed a cold, another dying aunt, and so it went on until the weekend arrived, and our numbers had sunk to five.

On the fatal Sunday morning we arrived at the Belfry and borrowed some headgear. We then made tracks for Priddy, changed, paid our bobs and reached the cave.

The water was high; it lapped the grill like a child sucking a lollipop, lovingly, longingly. Remarks rent the peaceful air; “We don’t go down that ******little hole do we”? “It ain’t my barf night you know”. And so on. “Yes” I replied, “Down there you go and like it”. After a little more persuasion we entered the cave and made our way to the top of the Long Dry Way. Here we lost another member. Then there were four! We pressed on down the Long Dry Way to the Old Grotto. Dare I hope that the formations would provide some consolation? They did, remarks were very satisfying. I was beginning to hope that the trip was not to be in vain; one subject however haunted my mind, The Water Rift; what would they think? Anyhow I thought I could soon lose or drown them if they became violent.

We soon reached the rift, and here all hopes if industrial advancement for me were crushed for ever. They did not like the water, especially cold water, and said so in loud explosive voices. Two were persuaded to the top of the 40, the rest declined.

We then returned to the Old Grotto and the Short Dry Route. Here I made one last effort and tried to appeal to their scientific interests with an explanation of cave formation; no one was interested. “Come on let’s get out of this ******** hole”. We eventually reached the entrance with another wetting at the head of the Long Dry Way.

On Monday morning the final blow came. “Chris – er lad, don’t mention caving again”.

Conclusion.

One bod did say that he would like to come again sometime, one out of ten, not bad really I suppose. Say 10 per cent, it sounds so much better.

Chris Falshaw.

Provisional Plan for Proposed B.E.C. Trip to 1954.

By Keith Gardner.

Having returned from a trip to the caving areas of , I am convinced that, providing sufficient support be given a club trip to these areas would be a great success. Camping sites abound and a large number of contacts in the spheres of archaeology, spelaeology, geology etc., have been made and have promised their full support if such a trip should be embarked upon. At les Eyzies de Tayac we have an old friend, M. Severin Blanc, the local chief of prehistory, and it is very likely that Prof. Movius Harvard University will be working there again. Both these men could be of great help. At Roc-Amadour, M. Andre Niederlander, a hotelier and archaeologist would help, while in Tarascon in the Pyrenees is M. Robert, President of the local Prehistoric Soc and also an ardent speleo., who could arrange for us visits to the less well known caves and also to closed parts of the vast cavern of Loubrive (this would entail full equipment) and Count Begouen may even be persuaded to open Trois Freres for us. Here also is the Dutch Geological Survey who would welcome one or two companions on their lonely expeditions into the mountains. Quite by chance – in the Geneva-Paris night train – we met Souchard Marcel, the speleologist who again promised his full help – it would be a great thing if we could get him to come with us! Perhaps expenses could be paid?

If, however, such a trip is intended, it is obvious that it will have to be well organised, and many decisions will have to be made early on in the proceedings. How will we travel? Will we live in one communal camp, cooking for the mass, or will we be individual groups? If we are all together it means that everyone will be ready to leave at the proper time, etc., but it also means a duty roster of cooks and camp duties – who is going to plan the meals? - and the equipment for mass cooking?

With regard to travel we have a variety of ways:-

a) A coach hired in would take us everywhere we wished, but it would take several days to get there and several coming back.

b) Train to Lympne airport where a Bristol Freighter could be chartered connecting with a reserved train to Paris and thence to Perigueux. Here a large coach, (S.N.C.F. French Railways) could be hired for the rest of the journey returning us to the station for the return by rail.

c ) A series of locally hired coaches could be used, the longer distances being made by rail.

Of these I think that b) is the most preferable.

One of the greatest decisions which will have to be made of course, is the determination of the dates. Obviously, a certain date will not suit everyone, and I think the weeks adjacent to August B.H. would be the most popular.

Someone in the party will have to be member of the Touring Club de France or a similar international camping body. Camping permits should be obtained for a large party. Someone also will have to be found who can write good French naturally, (a French teacher?) in order that letters can be dictated and. written without trouble.

In conclusion I think that the first job is to get some idea of the number of people interested – if B.E.C. cannot provide them then perhaps other clubs may be invited.

Quotations should be obtained from the transport people as soon as possible, and if I might suggest it – a special committee set up

Suggested Itinery

Saturday. Depart Bristol for Lympne - Paris - Perigueux.

Sunday. Arrive Perigueux. Coach to Les Eyzies. Pitch camp. Collect provisions (1st & 2nd days having been brought).

Monday. Caves of La Mouthe, Font de Gaume, Combarelles, Cap Blanc and Lascaux.

Tuesday. Caves of Laugeries Basse et Baute; Grand Roc; Carpe Diem.

Wednesday. Free day.

Thursday. To la Cave & Roc Amadour. Lunch at Andre N’s., Padirac & Peche Merle.

Friday. Free day.

Saturday. Travel to Tarascon-sur-Ariege.

Sunday. Niaux; Lombrive (possibly a pukka Expedition).

Monday. Labouiche and Gargas via Mas d’Azil.

Tuesday. Free day.

Wednesday. To Mediterranean Coast.

Thursday. Return to Perigueax and by rail to Paris.

Friday. In Paris.

Saturday. In Paris.

Sunday. Return to .

Keith S. Gardner.

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As you will see from the attached form, nominations were received at the A.G.M. for the 1954 Committee.

You are requested to fill in the Ballot Paper and return it by the date shown thereon, to :-

K.C. Dobbs, Assist. Hon. Sec.,
55. Broadfield Road,
Knowle,
Bristol. 4.

The Committee consists of 8 persons, one of whom must be a lady member. Therefore, if 8 persons are voted for, one must be a lady member.

K.C.D.

Annual Subscriptions

If you have not yet paid your 1954 subs. This applies to YOU.

Annual Subscriptions became due on Feb. 1st.

If you have not yet paid yours, please let the Hon. Treasurer hear from you as soon as possible. His address is:-

R.J. Bagshaw,
56, Ponsford Road,
Knowle,
Bristo1.4.

If you are a member of the Forces, (Conscript) you need not pay an annual subscription, BUT you must let the Hon. Treas. know that you wish to renew your membership.

If you remit by post please let us know your present address, so that a receipt may be sent. If you can find it, please send your last year’s membership card.

If you were a junior member last year and are now 18 or over your subs. will now have risen to 10/-.

S.O.S.

The stove at the Belfry has just about had its lot.

If anyone knows where another, preferably of the same dimensions, can be obtained at a reasonable price will they please let one of the Committee know.

K.C.D.

Another S.O.S.

Unless there is a material increase in the number of article etc. reaching us, I can give no promise that the BB will remain at six pages, or in fact that it will appear as regularly as in the past. The fact that this is an eight page issue is solely due to the fact that the vast majority was set before these two final notices arrived.

T.H.S.

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R.J. Bagshaw, Hon. Sec. 56, Ponsford Road, Knowle, Bristol.4.
K.C. Dobbs, Hon. Assist. Sec. 55, Broadfield Road, Knowle, Bristol. 4.
T.H. Stanbury, Hon. Editor. 48, Novers Park Road, Knowle, Bristol. 4.