OUCC Proceedings 2 (1963)


OUCC Home Page

OUCC Proceedings Index

OUCC Proceedings 2 Index

In editing the first number of these Proceedings, our predecessor had an easier task than us, since he was able to give a resumé of all the work done by our club up to October last. Although less than a year has passed since the publication of our first number, we intend to bring the "history" up to date.

In August 1962 several of our members again visited northern Spain, and more new discoveries were recorded. Our other meets during the year unfortunately have been hampered by transport difficulties, although several meets have been held nevertheless. In Michaelmas Term we ran two novices' meets to G-B, Rod's Pot, Goatchurch, Sidcot Swallet, and August Hole. A successful meet was held in Agen Allwedd, and we are grateful to the Hereford Caving Club for the use of their cottage. Christmas found us at the Manchester University Spelaeological Society's hut in Clapham. A warming-up session in Bar Pot resulted in loss of morale on the part of one member, but before withdrawing for her benefit, a trip across Pool Traverse was made. A slightly smaller party set out on the next expedition to Nettle Pot, and after a little blasphemy found its real objective, Car Pot! Difficulties were encountered when even our very thinnest man (G.S.!) had to retreat from the Baptistry crawl with ignominy. However, the following day A-G succumbed to us, providing a most rewarding trip.

The snow in Hilary Term led to postponement of many meets, which were held eventually, nevertheless, in Lamb Leer and The Tawe Valley. Another Burrington meet enabled us to initiate into the underworld some keen lads from a Witney youth club. The Easter vacation saw a slight mishap in Bar Pot. One of our members who had been feeling groggy from an overdose of carbon monoxide gained whilst mending his card, fainted on his way up the entrance pitch. He was successfully brought to the surface by the party, and our thanks are due to the Settle Police who provided a Land Rover to take him from the mouth of the pot itself to Skipton Hospital. Various members undertook trips with other clubs, notably Wessex and Craven, to Kingsdale, Juniper Gulf, and other holes.

The summer has seen us on Mendip. Dr Oliver Lloyd was just about rescued from Lamb Leer in a Practice Rescue. Other caves visited Eastwater Swallet. A summer vac meet was enjoyed in the South Wales Caving Club's hut at Penwyllt. Two days were passed in Tunnel Cave, and other caves visited included Pant Mawr and Cwm Dwr Jama. The main meet of the summer, however is to be the Oxford-Derbyshire Spelaeological Expedition to N.W. Spain, 1963. This is the result of the fusion of the Oxford University Cave Club Third Summer Expedition to the Picos de Europa and the Derbyshire Spelaeological Expedition to N.W. Spain, 1963. A report of the work achieved will appear in the next number of our Proceedings.

Our most notable talks of the year have been given by John Buxton of the Cave Diving Group, and by Reg Howard on the Gouffre Berger. Other talks have included northern Spain and the caving potential of upper Wharfedale and Littondale. The Annual Dinner was greatly enjoyed, and Tim Cooke (Brasenose) was elected Chairman at the accompanying A.G.M.

During recent months a Council of Northern Caving Clubs has been set up to control access to Casterton and Leck Fells. The inadequacy of such a body is commented on in this number, see article "Future for Potholing?" in the light of the urgent need for a national potholing council.