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Happy New Year

A belated greeting to all readers of the B.B., and good caving or climbing in 1977.

New Disguise

For the sixth time during its life, the B.B. has changed its shape.  We reckon that the bookshelves of older members must present a motley appearance by now as the B.B. has been Foolscap (13"x8") Quarto (10"x8") Sixmo (8"x5") back to Quarto again, A5 (8¼" x 5⅞") and now A4 (11¾" x 8¼").   What we lose in thickness we gain in page size, and we will do a few experiments during the year to see how best to take advantage of the new sized pages. For example, we are now saving some paper (whilst  going back to having covers) by printing the list of club officials on the inside of the front cover (not on this re-print) and the monthly crossword enlarged in size.


The B.B. team is making steady rather than spectacular progress.  Alan Kennett is now, conversant with the printing process; Barrie has the supplies well in hand; Mike continues to take some of the work of preparing masters, and Andy is twisting people's arms for articles.

We are not yet in the happy position of being able to print pages of the B.B. ahead of time, but, the signs continue to suggest that this time may not be far away.

Committee Problems

Two subjects which the committee must get sorted out as soon as possible are the dinner (and thanks should go to all those who sent back questionnaires) and the installation (if possible) of some form of central heating.  We shall do our best to keep members up to date on both these important subjects.

Where Did Last June Go?

Readers with long memories may still be wondering what happened to the B.B. which suffered when our printing machine broke down last June.  One entire side of each of the pieces of paper had been printed before the machine wrecked the master and caused work to stop, so all this paper cannot be used for anything else.  This being so, we are planning to retype the damaged master and finish the printing of this edition of the B.B.  It will be sent to you alongside one of this years B.B. postings.  We are doing this because it will not cost any more and will at least enable those who collect B.B.'s to complete their set for last year. If it's any consolation, when you finally get last June's B.B., it will have the distinction of being the most delayed edition there has ever been.

As the slow-motion drama of the proposed changes to N.C.A. goes on, we shall try to keep members in touch with events.  As some members probably know, the Working Party, which was formed at the suggestion of the Southern Council representative on the N.C.A., has now produced its findings and, again on our suggestion, it was then agreed to give people plenty of time to think about it before N.C.A. did anything about it. N.C.A. are to hold a special meeting on this subject some time in the spring.  Needless to say, the Southern Council's own working party (which started the whole matter off in the first place) have already met to consider what they will be recommending to the Southern Council at its next meeting in February.  The C.S.C.C. delegates to the special meeting of N.C.A. will then go to this meeting fully briefed as to what aspects the Southern Council are prepared to concede, to negotiate or to stand firm on.  Obviously, these last points will be made as few as possible, as the C.S.C.C. does not wish to place any unnecessary obstacles in the way towards a final agreement. One presumes, however, that if a deadlock is reached, then the meeting will either have to find some new delaying formula or face the consequences of a breakdown.  Once again, we must hope that commonsense will prevail, and in the months between now and then, we will be keeping readers up to date, both by articles and comment of this sort, on what is going on.

Monthly Crossword

The editor will be pleased to accept crosswords in line with the new format as in this B.B. Crosswords should be 11 x 11 squares in size; have a translational or rotational symmetry pattern and contain mainly words associated with caving or climbing activities generally.  If clues are sent as well, these should be of the cryptic variety, but un-clued crosswords will be accepted.



The Hut Warden would like to remind members that CROCKERY and CUTLERY will be taken out of circulation on the 31st January for an experimental period, to see if it contributes to the tidiness of the Belfry.  Please bring your own in future!

Barrie would like to remind members that CAR BADGES are still available.  Owing to rising costs, these may well go the way of club ties in future, so if you want a car badge, NOW is the time to get hold of one.  It may soon be too late!

There are still some outstanding HUT FEES owed by some members.  Please settle as soon as possible – and don’t forget that ANNUAL SUBS are due on the 31st of Jan!