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Book Review

U.B.S.S. Proceedings Vol 13, No 3. September 1974.

The U.B.S.S. Proceedings, an annual publication, may occasionally lose in topicality, but that is more than made up for by the thoroughness and detail of the contents. The 1974 volume is well up to the U.B.S.S.’s traditional standard.

The reports are split equally between archaeological and speleological work.  The archaeological articles deal excavations on the river terraces at Ham Green, Bristol and in a quarry at Holly Lane, Clevedon (both rather specialised subjects) also work on the Roman settlement at Charterhouse done in the 1960's and an excellent paper by Bishop on the Middle Pleistocene deposits in a bone fissure in Westbury quarry.  The paper is an interim one since work continues, but there is already evidence that Westbury may be the earliest recorded site of man in Britain.

The caving section begins with two recently explored caves in county Clare - McGarin's Cave and Formoyle East Cave - both comparatively insignificant, but models of thorough writing up.  The account of Manor Farm Swallet (Stanton and Smart) is admittedly a year after the event, but material is new.  There is a small but well set out grade 5 survey.  The report of the 1973 expedition to Yugoslavia however, is a great disappointment through no fault of the Society's.  The Yugoslav government's decision to ban foreigners from all but show caves meant that any exploration had to be in remote areas with no organised local contact. You can hardly expect success under these conditions.

The two dozen or so photographs, plans and illustrations spread about the 1Q7 pages are all of a high standard.  At £1.50 a copy it may be a little expensive for the average caver, but essential to a club library.

B.E.C. Ball Pens.

A limited quantity of Ball Pens are now available.  These are stamped BRISTOL EXPLORATION CLUB on one side and have THE BELFRY, PRIDDY TEL: WELLS 72126 on the other.  They are made by the Harris Pencil Co and are retractable with a toughened ball and detachable handle.  They are available in red, blue and black, the pen colour being the same as the ink inside.  Price only 5p each.  At present these are held by Alfie, but arrangements will be made to have them available at the Belfry if demand warrants it.

Don't forget that surveys; B.E.C. Caving reports (Including the first edition of CAVE NOTES); spares and library lists are all available at the Belfry.  Arrangements are in hand for further supplies of car badges and club ties.