Depth through thought

OUCC News 26th February 1992

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On Sunday evening, about 5:00, Sean, Dave B & Tony went to the hut to get some rope from the hut. We found the lock fitting broken, apparently cut with bolt shears, and the padlock (locked) on the ground under the window. The door was propped shut with our tyre. They asked a diver who turned up if he knew anything about it. Earlier he had been mending their trailer and had seen 'a man' go into the hut, and leave soon after. They couldn't see anything obviously missing, and Dave said he would fix the lock on Monday morning.-It may be worth reporting it in case we find that we have lost anything, but first we need to check who went to the hut over the weekend as well. If you know anything about this please let us know.

Last week's well attended & lively AGM gave OUCC its new committee as follows: Steve Roberts (President); Sherry Mayo (Chair); Richard Barnes (Sec); Jim Ramsden (Meets Sec); Mark Crossley (Treasurer); Steve Phipps (Lamppost); Ian Barker (Van); Michelle Nickerson (Tackle); Tony Seddon (Loris). A fine gang, good luck.


Annual Dinner Saturday 7th March, 7.30 at Jamals, Walton Street.  Drinks in St. Hugh's Graduate Centre at 5.00. Sean needs numbers.

Caving in Siberia, Talk and slides by Sasha Belyaev, Wed 4th March 9.00, NQLR St. Johns.

Expedition News

Passports for Spain...
If you think you might be coming on expedition, check that your passport is valid in readiness for the summer. Also it is worth having an Elll form (you can get it from the post office) just in case you need medical treatment in Spain.


Final Call for Ireland
I am about to book the ferry to Ireland at Easter, so if anyone wants to go who has not given me their name yet, then please do so tonight. So far there are eight of us going in two carloads from Oxford. We will be leaving Oxford on the morning of Saturday 11th April, and will come back very late Sunday night/ early Monday morning on 19th/20th April. The cost is about £85 each for the ferry plus accomodation - petrol, food and beer extra.
Chris Densham


If a club has been digging a cave for 14 years there must be something in it worth seeing - at least that's what I presumed! So when Chris Densham asked me if I fancied a trip down Wigmore Swallet, where a breakthrough t the streamway has just been made, I decided this was a good chance to test my theory.

 "You'll be in and out in a couple of hours", said the man from the bat shop in the Hunters' beforehand, and I was looking forward to what he described as "a collector's item". If the carefully constructed entrance shaft is anything to go by, a lot of effort has been put into this cave. The first section is mainly a crawl with a few tightish flat out sections. Here and there the whole thing is shored up with props, and there are a couple of small climbs down on scaffolding and ladder. After about an hour's caving we came to a couple of free climbs, one of which is pretty tight. An undulating rift is reached which we charged into well, squeezed into - headfirst, only to find ourselves heading down to a very awkward pitch head with no room to turn round. Chris did some strange acrobatics and ended up on the ladder. I however squirmed backwards up the sloping rift, turned round and then approached feet first, only to to be told by Chris that time was running out and that we had better be heading out. On the way out the free climbs suddenly became very hard work.

Although we didn't make the end, we could hear crashing water, and we were only a couple of short pitches away from the streamway, which is apparently well worth seeing.
Richard Barnes.

A bed time story...

Fans of William Stead will know that one of his most famed phrases, occasioned by his dropping some Krabs into a tiny rift, was: "I say, has anyone here got a large magnet?". The fact that the Krabs were aluminium only adds to the story. Last night I locked my bike, cleverly using the mega expensive lock through the railings, the front wheel, and the frame. I unlocked it, uncleverly letting the weight of the bike pop the lock suddenly. The railings were on a bridge over the canal. Half my bike lock was in the canal. So William vindicated! - I borrowed a LARGE MAGNET - and went fishing. And now I have all of a bike lock again. I'm not taking the magnet caving, though. 
Uncle Steve

Letter to the editor

I feel I should like to comment briefly on the end of Mr Guilford's time as chair for the club. When I was but a mere lass, when cavers still used ladders, and the club still had some to use, there was much chaos. The forces of entropy were upon  us. May I remark how refreshing it has been for this gentle society to be graced and humoured during our fervent discussions by his excellent abilities as a chair. A cheering reign of enthalpy has held us all in a timeless spell of oneness. How we will miss his passing! May I also take this opportunity to wish all success to Miss Mayo who, I feel sure, will prove to be his worthy successor.
Your obedient & snivelling servant,
J. Arthur.

(The editor wishes to point out that he is a victim of his own editorial policy of including anything submitted, so couldn't really escape this one! However, please be reminded that letters taking a contrary view will also be accepted, even if the author's are liable to get their genitals tied to a wire fence).

Here it is! The long awaited survey of Brown Hill Pot as explored by Steve Roberts on his last trip earlier this month (with porters Urs Mead, Tony Seddon, & Dave Lacey). Tell us if you want any other pics/surveys included in depth through thought, we'll do our best! This survey, originally drawn by Steve, was scanned and pasted into Aldus Pagemaker by Sherry and Mark before finally finding its way to DTT.