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Editorial

No Prizes

Back in March, when material for the B.B. was so short that a massive dose of re-printing from Volume 1 of the B. B. was the only way by which the number of pages could be filled, a prize of £1 was offered for the best practical suggestion for improving the B.B.  The closing date was given as the end of May.

Since the B.B. is currently running a month late (due mainly to the chronic shortage of material which the scheme was designed to overcome) your patient editor has waited until the end of June before announcing the results of this suggestion scheme.

Now I know that, in these days of inflation, the sum of £1 does not represent wealth beyond the dreams of avarice although judging by the reaction of members to the increase of the annual subscription, it presumably has not yet fallen into the category of peanuts - but even so, your editor foolishly imagined that it would provide at least, some incentive for the more ingenious club members to come forward with practical schemes for ensuring more material (or other improvements) for the B.B.

Alas!  Apart from Tim's resurrection of the monthly versus bi-monthly B.B. which, whatever its merits, can hardly taken up without the general agreement of the club in A.G.M., there was only ONE other suggestion. This was to publish an annual subject and author index - and the idea was given a suitably practical twist by the suggested submitting a completely cross-referenced index for last year’s B.B. Unfortunately, some years ago, the A.G.M. advised the editor that the inclusion of such an index while useful to a few members would be regarded as a waste of paper by the majority of the club and so I do not feel entitled to go against such advice by adopting the present suggestion.

Thus, before anybody starts to sharpen their pencil and write down resolutions for the next A.G.M., let it be placed on record that, in response to a general appeal to club members for practical ideas for getting more material and otherwise improving the B.B. and in spite of the incentive offered (which would have been paid out by the editor and not from club funds) NOT ONE SINGLE SUGGESTION WHICH COULD BE USED WAS FORTHCOMING.  our editor will therefore soldier on, under the assumption that although he may not be perfect, neither are his readers!

Grateful Thanks

On the brighter side, for the editor at least, have been the letters and personal messages of encouragement which, it must be admitted, came just when he needed some form of morale-boosting.  Thanks, in particular, to Janet Setterington who, before motherhood intervened, was a professional journalist and whose kind words for the B.B. are therefore based on personal experience on a much higher level than that of the B.B. editor.  It is pleasant to think that the work of producing the B.B. is appreciated in some quarters at least.

2,595 Cavers

One of the small points which came out of the last meeting of the Southern Council was the calculation by one of the delegates that the combined membership of Southern caving clubs is 2,595 and that this is greater than the caving membership of any other region. We had better step up our rate of discovery of new caves!

“Alfie”