CANOEISTS AT THE COTTAGE: Some of us thought that a group of canoeists were joking when they booked Godre Pentre recently with the intention of canoeing over the waterfalls. However local television and the national press, including The Daily Telegraph, subsequently proved that the last laugh was on us when they reported that
"Alan Barrett, 19, from Maidenhead, Berks, set a world record for freefall canoeing when he plunged 52ft over "Scwol Eira" [sic], the Waterfall of the Snow, on the River Hepste in South Wales.
PLUS ça change : When checking Pelobates 12 for the editorial I noticed that one of the articles in it recorded the first working party's activities at the first cottage that Croydon had in Ystradfellte, back in Easter 1970.
ANYONE WANNA BUY A HOLE? Well, lease one actually. English Heritage are reported to be looking for an organisation willing to turn the extensive chalk tunnels underlying Dover Castle into a tourist attraction. The tunnels are on three levels that run out to the cliff face above Townwall St. They were built for military purposes. Begun in the early 1800's, at the time of the Napoleonic threat, they were further enhanced at the time of the first world war and again in 1939-45. Since 1956 they have been the subject of government denials that they would be the official emergency seat of Government for the south of England in the event of another war. Amongst those firms said to be interested in taking up the lease is Madame Tussaud's who are also responsible for Wookey Hole.
RUMOUR has it that Colin Bunce of the Kilshanny Outdoor Centre, Co. Clare ( and Croydon Caving Club alumnus ) is about to give up what most of us would regard as an idyllic existence, as a professional caver on the Burren, in favour of matrimony.
SOUTH EAST CAVE RESCUE: The Club's SECRO wardens have recently been contacted by the Organisations Secretary to confirm their continued inclusion on the SECRO Register. As some of those on the list have moved, others are less frequent in their explorations of the underground features in the south-east and some are, frankly, geriatric it would be a nice idea if some other members volunteered their services as wardens. If you are active in the SECRO area, and particularly if you live local to the main areas of abandoned mines and quarries ( Merstham, Godstone, Reigate etc ) you might contact Eric Catherine, Secretary, SECRO to get yourself added to the register.
SUPRA-WHITE LADY CAVE: On 8th March Ewan Grange climbed into a very narrow entrance directly above White Lady Cave. Cave passage led to a chamber covered in moonmilk. There was no sign that the cave had been previously entered. If there is any way on it will involve climbing up in the chamber roof and will certaintly spoil the formations - a nice question of ethics.
CAVING ON 'MARS': In the Club's archives I discovered a letter under the above title addressed to the manufacturers of the well known confection so beloved by cavers everywhere. It suggested that "caving on Mars" would make a good theme for an advertisement. Unfortunately the makers did not agree. Neither did they cough-up any money.
CADER FAWR: Some of you may be wondering how the Club has sustained its interest in various muddy holes on Cader Fawr over so many years. It was suggested recently that it might have something to with the fact that a reasonable translation of this hill's name is BIG ARMCHAIR.
QUERY: Wouldn't you be bats if you slept hanging upside down ?