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Editorial

Happy New Year

With the start of another new year, we should like to wish a very Happy and prosperous New Year.

Improvement

You may have noticed a small but acceptable improvement which has been made to the B.B. in this, its 27th year of publication.  The clarity of the type should be much more then in previous years, and this is due to our having converted the B.B. typewriter to take paper tape.  We hope that members will approve of this small but significant improvement.

Balancing The B.B.

An attempt is made in the B.B. to keep a balance between the various types of articles which we print. The intention is to provide something readable in every issue for every member. Lengthy articles of a specialist nature are only of real interest to a minority of readers; and we try to space these out so that they do not appear too frequently.  Having said all this, readers will perhaps be surprised to find a long article on surveying in this B.B. following hard on the heels of a long article on photography in last month's issue.

The reason for this is that the work published this month represents an advance in its subject and is the result of original work by club members - made possible by the complexity of the Cuthbert’s passage network.  New techniques in the technical side of caving - like new cave discoveries - should be made public as soon as possible.

Even if the work described was of less interest to the relevant specialists than is the case, it would still have been published this month for the rather more mundane reason that the editor has very little else to print.

This is a long standing problem which can probably never be solved to everybody's satisfaction.  One can either have a B.B. of variable size depending on what comes up; or a B.B. of constant size which comes out whenever there is enough to fill it; or a B.B. of constant size and regularity, filled out occasionally with stuff which does not appeal to many members.  Remember, if you want more of a particular sort of article, then you have to provide the raw material.

Crystal Balls Department

The other long article in the Christmas B.B. was intended to be a humorous and far-fetched bit of nonsense suitable for the festive season.  However, we hear that a recent allocation of grants to caving bodies has allocated the lion's share to that dealing with caving instructors.  If we don't watch out, the university of Charterhouse may be nearer to the truth than we like to think!

Are We Friendly Enough?

Tony Johnson's letter makes the point - amongst others that a lot of the things we enjoy have been obtained in the past by virtue of the good relationship which existed between cavers and locals.  One could also cite the case for the converse of this being true - that most of the bad things which have happened to caving (like the formation of various beurocratic bodies) were started because of bad relationships between cavers and locals - mainly in the North.  Although caving is now an accepted part of the local scene, we should still take every opportunity to make and keep good relations with our neighbours of every sort.

“Alfie”