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Round and About

A Monthly Miscellany

By 'Wig'

128.   News from the North:  Since the rescue from Birks Fell early in the year, relations between the farmer and landowner and cavers seem to be deteriorating.  Cavers were prevented from entering the cave until May 1974. The position is being reviewed again at the end of October.  A rumour is circulating that access is difficult to both Strans Gill and Pasture Gill.  Confirmation is still awaited.

Difficulty is being experienced at Monge Gill as the cave is not properly gated.  Bookings for Gingling Hole should be made as soon as possible for 1975 as the cave has been closed due to a misunderstanding with the owner.  Members visiting any of the pots on Penyghent should ensure that they call on the game keeper, George Perfect at Brackenbottom before they descend.  Magnetometer Pot is unsafe due to corroded oil drums lining the shaft.

Access to Pippikin is not restricted to any part of the year (as is other parts of the dales for grouse shooting). This is conditional on cavers approaching the cave from Bullpot Farm and not from the Leek Fell road during the grouse breeding season.  From Bullpot Farm, proceed via County Pot or Scales Ram keeping to the paths to avoid damage to the grass and moor land grips.

Cherry Tree Hole is still closed. Pikedaw Mine will be re-opened as soon as the lid is completed and there will be unrestricted access.

Special Weather forecasts. C .N.C.C. have arranged to display weather forecast notices outside the Youth Hostel in Kettlewell. Finally, work on a new edition of the Northern cave handbook is well under way.

129.   News from Wales:  Like the C.N.C.C., the Cambrian C.C. is producing a new publication.  The 'Red Dragon' is a journal - the first I believe to be published by a regional body.  Price 30p, it has 64 pages of A4.  Packing and postage is 10.5p.  Available from Frank Baguley, 15 Elm Grove, Gadlys, Aberdare, Glam. CF44 8DN.  Access to Agen Allwedd is now conditionally open again following the inquest on the death of Roger Solari on July 1974.

130.   Social: Congratulations to Doug Stuckey. Word has filtered through the grapevine that Doug is now the father of a bouncing baby boy.  Has anyone heard any thing of Sybil?  The last we heard is that she was in Uganda and political events in that country may have made life difficult for her.  Perhaps someone could drop her a line to find out how she is?   Frank 'Dustbin' Darbon was at the dinner and generally around Mendip during early October.  He was on an extended holiday from CanadaKeith Murray and Frank Jones both managed to attend the dinner by the skin of their teeth due to the late sailing of their ships. Frank is off to Japan and Keith to Ghana. Nigel Taylor is being silenced and is entering the police force and I understand he is being posted to the St. Paul’s area of Bristol.  Graham Robinson tells us that Sago is in hospital again with a stomach ulcer this time. He certainly has had a run of bad luck and we hope he soon recovers.  On the same subject, Tony Corrigan's leg is still giving him trouble, and we hope that this too will soon clear up.

131.   St. Cuthbert’s Swallet - Report and Survey:  The now well-known and long overdue report on St. Cuthbert’s is so planned to be the most comprehensive report that has ever been produced for any cave in the country including Lancaster/Easegill and O.F.D.  The whole report is designed to be published in fifteen parts - to produce it in one volume would have proved prohibitive. Altogether it is at least 350 pages and some 30 surveys will be included together with a number of photographs (not necessarily of pretties, but interesting features of the cave).  The parts are as follows:-

Caving Report Number 13:

·        Part A Discovery & Exploration.  Published. Now out of print.

·        Part B Complete Survey.

·        Part C Description and detailed survey of Old and New Routes.

·        Part D Main Chambers.

·        Part E Rabbit Warren.  Published. Still in print.

·        Part F Gour Hall Area. Published.  Still in Print.

·        Part G Cerberus & Maypole Series.

·        Part H Rabbit Warren Extension.  Published. In print

·        Part I September Series.

·        Part J Long Chamber & Canyon Series.

·        Part K Rocky Boulder Series.

·        Part L Geological Notes.

·        Part M Hydrological Notes.

·        Part N Flora & Fauna.

·        Part O Miscellaneous information and Bibliography.  (Published - now out of print.)

Already, many members have booked the whole range of the report - and members who have not yet done so should contact the Publications Editor. When all the parts of the report are published, those who want the whole lot to be bound as a complete book can send them back to the club and have them bound in rexine.  Ten copies, being bound in leather and rexine, have already been sold.

132.   Corrections:  Two recent pieces of information must be corrected.  Terry Baker’s digging site near the Mells valley is NOT the site as mentioned in para 118.  This is being dug by Willie Stanton.  Baker’s dig is apparently further down the valley and much higher and is mainly archaeological.  More details later.  The second piece of information which needs t to be brought up to date refers to Cowsh Avens (111.)  The hoped-for breakthrough to the surface has NOT been agreed to by the Maine family, and there is little hope of it ever being opened in the near or longer term future.  The latest W.C.C. Journal has an entertaining article by Fred Davies on the Cowsh marathon.  Copies are in the club library.