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The

Belfry

Bulletin

THE JOURNAL OF THE BRISTOL EXPLORATION CLUB Volume 6 No.53

January 1952

ANNUAL DINNER The Hon, Sec. has still a few tickets left for the next Annual Dinner, to be held on Saturday, January 26th, at the Whiteladies Cinema Restaurant, at 7 for 7.30pm. Tickets are 7/6 each, cash with order. Those who were there last year will no doubt already have booked tickets, and will be ready to assure others that a very good time was had by all. The backsliders will now, no doubt, rush to get the few remaining tickets from Bob Bagshaw, whose address appears, if we still remember it, at the end of this Bulletin. Those who have already applied should receive their tickets within a week, otherwise, panic is in order, and the Hon. Sec should be, to put it mildly, informed. ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING Owing to ill health, Miss Jill Rollason has asked that her name should not go forward for election to the Committee for 1952. All members should therefore amend their ballot papers accordingly. We wish Jill a very speedy and complete recovery. Members who have items or resolutions which they wish to be discussed at the A.G.M. should hand these, in writing to the Hon Sec. before the start of the meeting. As time is strictly limited, these should be kept as short, and as few as possible. London Section Meeting The next meeting of the London Section will be held on Sunday 24th February, 1952 at 26, Gateside Road, S.W.17. All the usual arrangements will apply. This is by way of being the London Section Sec’s farewell party, and he hopes that as many as possible of the exiles will help him to celebrate. PHOTOGRAPHIC COMPETITION. As it is now after the closing date, and no entries have been received for that 1952 photographic Competition, this has been abandoned. EQUIPMENT SALES Roy Ifold reports that there is still plenty of equipment, particularly lamps and spares available. Helmets cannot be kept in stock, but can be obtained to order in about three or four weeks. Members needing caving gear should get in touch with Roy. FOR SALE One standard cap lamp and 3-volt NIFE cell complete, in working order. £2. Apply D. Radmore, 3, Gloucester Road, Old Patchway, near Bristol.


BB53/2 CHRISTMAS GREETINGS The Club received a message of Christmas Greetings from Pierre Ageron, Vice President of the Societe Speleologique de France. Pierre will be remembered by those who attended the conference at Valence in 1949 for the, immense amount of work he put into ensure the success of the trip. Greetings were received also from the Westminster Speleo Group, of Ilford. CLUB LIBRARY The Club Library has recently suffered from an attack of additions, including the following:British Caver, Vol. 22 Cave Science, Nos 17 and 18 Teach Yourself Geology. E.U. P. CLIMBING SECTION MEET; XMAS 1951. CONISTON WESTMORLAND The following attended the Climbing Section's Christmas meet at Coniston, Westmorland: R.A. Setterington, A. Rice, G.T. Lucy, D. Bindon, M. Yea, A. Searle, D.P.Puplett, R.W.C. Cantle, and J.R. Crabtree. The following note on the expedition has been provided by the Climbing Secretary. Weather. Very indifferent, rain, snow in the air. The party assembled at Holly How Youth Hostel on Saturday evening 22nd December, 1951 for dinner and a drink at the Black Bull. Sunday, 23rd December. The party decided as the weather was too bad for serious rock climbing, ridgewalking would be preferable. The track up past the Old Copper mines was taken, and the party ascended to the summit of the Old Man of Coniston after having passed round Levene Water. On the summit, Christmas cake, Australian wine (women beware! it will make you hop like kangaroos), French wine, chocolates, oranges and the other good things of Christmas were consumed with relish. After partaking of this mea1 a rapid descent was made down the side to the track leading to Goats Water and thence back to the Hostel. Altogether a good energetic walk, although the mist had prevented the fine views being seen. The evening was spent at the Black Bull where hot lips (Crabtree) entertained the party by pulling faces. Monday, 24th December. All but two of the party motored into Ambleside where shopping and general sight-seeing took place, followed by drinks and lunch. It had by now come on to rain, but nevertheless the party’s original intention was carried out, namely a general tour round the lakes. The road for Keswick was taken, and then on to Cockermouth, though the fine mountain scenery could only be seen at intervals as the mountain tops peeped through the mist. From Cockermouth round by the Honister Pass, where bottom gear is useful and cyclists are advised to walk. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED, then on to Buttermere and thence back to Keswick. (don't mention the place to Sett, unless you also tell him where to get a straight ‘Duggy’ frame. Then on to Ambleside and back to Coniston dinner, and a quiet sing-song around the fire. Tuesday, Christmas Day. The day dawned clear and the party in general set off for Dom Crag and Goats Water. After a lazy but very enjoyable walk, lunch was had at the foot of Dom Crag. Here the party split up, half going up on to the ridge in the snow, while the tires, lazy and crippled hobbled off back to Coniston for tea. (Sorry, no tea to be had). Christmas dinner was had, a merry evening at the Black Bull and much jollification in the Common Room till the early hours of the morning.. ... a very good party. Wednesday, December 26th. Dawned clear. , but not for long. At 10.00am the party left, splitting up for their various destinations after a very happy Christmas.


BB53/3 MENDIP CAVES

J. IFOLD

1. AUGUST HOLE August Hole is one of the five largest systems in the Mendip area, but for some reason is just about as popular as Stoke Lane. The entrance is in Longwood, close to Lower Farm, Charterhouse, and admission is obtained on paying a small fee to the owner of the farm, Mr. Young. Cavers may change in the barn at the farm; then, proceeding down the valley, fill carbide lamps at the cattle trough, if the weather is dry. If it is wet, ample opportunity will be found at the cave entrance, which is opposite the sewer bed. The entrance is a tight vertical rift about forty feet deep. On reaching the bottom, it is followed for a further twenty feet and into a small bedding chamber on the left. A B.E.C. member once broke two ribs going through this part of the cave, but since that time some patient person has chipped away the tight piece. Follow the passage until the head of the double ten-foot vertical is reached. A twenty-foot rope is needed at this point. At the foot the left-hand passage leads to Long Wood, and the right-hand one to August Hole. Following the right-hand one, we come to the Water Chamber, where there is usually a waterfall dropping from the roof and disappearing into a small passage, down which we proceed to the top of a thirty foot chimney. At the bottom of this chimney is a small tunnel. If by any chance one has stayed dry to this point, and wishes to remain so, one takes the opening to the left of this tunnel and turning right almost immediately wriggles down a tight squeeze leading to the other end of the tunnel. This is known as the ‘by-pass’. Soon after this, one reaches a high rift passage with formations, ending in a drop of about 10 feet, which requires a twenty foot rope. This is the last point at which a rope is required. One is now in the top of a fault which slopes at about 30 degrees for a hundred feet or so. It is twenty to thirty feet wide and about ten feet high, and there are two grottoes a short way down on the right hand side, one of which I consider to be the prettiest on Mendip. This is a good time and place to stop for a breather. (To be continued) Useful addresses:Hon. Secretary

R. J.Bagshaw, 56, Ponsford Road, Knowle, Bristol, 4

Librarian

J.W. Ifold Leigh House, Nempnett Thrubwell, Chew Stoke, Near Bristol

Hut Warden

R.A. Setterington, 21, Priorswood Road, Taunton, Somerset,

B. B Editors

D.A.Coase and W.J. Shorthose, 26, Gateside Road, Upper Tooting London, S.W.17.


Belfry Bulletin Number 053