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 Spar Mine - Lloyd's - Hendre

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Les W
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PostSubject: Re: Spar Mine - Lloyd's - Hendre   Wed 10 Dec 2008, 1:32 pm

Hi Mike,

Good to hear from you, glad Poachers was all sorted, hope the same can be done with the Spar Mine.

We will be up in May, maybe see you then.

Les
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PostSubject: Re: Spar Mine - Lloyd's - Hendre   Wed 10 Dec 2008, 2:13 pm

it will be if ive got anything to do with it . it will be good to catch up with you . what are your plans for may . any thing in mind and how long are you up for
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PostSubject: last night's visit...   Fri 12 Dec 2008, 3:04 am

Braved the "freeze-your-nuts-off" cold last night and took my camera out for a little play, here are the results Wink







Last edited by Jo Mc-M on Fri 12 Dec 2008, 3:14 am; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: Spar Mine - Lloyd's - Hendre   Fri 12 Dec 2008, 3:08 am

Les W wrote:
I'm just as keen as the next man (or woman) to keep access as free and open as possible.
Keen indeed queen

Les W wrote:
tie people up in red tape and ****...
Aah, one I missed off the filter, thanks Les Laughing
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PostSubject: Re: Spar Mine - Lloyd's - Hendre   Fri 12 Dec 2008, 9:58 am

Twas a cold one wasn't it - pictures look great and well done for making the effort taking all the equipment down. Well worth the sacrifice - model looks good too What a Face

Would also like to say Mr Tomos from the Royal Oak has kindly given permission for us to park in the pub car park in future (and asked us not to park in the lane running round the back of the pub). He has asked if we could let him know however which cars belong to cavers when we are going up to the mine, as a few cars have been abandoned there. Very Happy

Would also like to say a big thanks to everyone who has spent the time to help out with advice over how to proceed with this, you are all quite literally a 'mine' of information cheers
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PostSubject: Re: Spar Mine - Lloyd's - Hendre   Sun 14 Dec 2008, 11:02 am

nice photo's jo . glad :the model: kept his cloths on or did he affraid mick and i think we can rig a nice little round trip in there
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PostSubject: Re: Spar Mine - Lloyd's - Hendre   Sun 14 Dec 2008, 12:33 pm

Thank you my dear Very Happy

Won't go into whether :my model: was or wasn't wearing clothes but can recomend Microsoft Airbrushing software rabbit

You know I like Spa anyway so any trips round there will be good, if we can do some from novices to pro's, that'd be good Wink
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PostSubject: Re: Spar Mine - Lloyd's - Hendre   Tue 16 Dec 2008, 1:20 pm

Ian wrote:
The position is, (as I understand it), that the agents acting for the landowners are very concerned about liability issues and have advised the landowner to seal all the entrances/shafts.

However, one of the landowners (3 brothers?) is a good friend of our current chairman and, instead of sealing the entrances (cost issues perhaps?) has offered UCET the opportunity to "look after" (I don't know what the right term would be) the mine(s) provided that the entrance(s) are gated (limit potential liability) and that the existing fences are repaired at our cost.

As a caving club we are anxious to keep as many caves and mines accessible as possible and for the relatively small cost and work involved (requested by the landowner) we saw it as an equitable arrangement.

Personally, I would always favour having an open access but I do understand the landowners concerns and although we all (UCET club members etc.) carry insurance, not everyone who ventures down might do so.

Your point is well made simplyexploring Smile

Ian
any news on whats happening Ian Very Happy
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PostSubject: Re: Spar Mine - Lloyd's - Hendre   Tue 16 Dec 2008, 1:35 pm

Hi Martin,

I am afraid I was not at the last caving club meeting (Last Thursday) although I understand that some of the club members went to the Spar mine. After each club trip it is usual for the members to go to the Glan-yr-Afon Pub (Dolphin, Holywell) and that is where we all "catch up" on the latest news. I regret I wasn't there either on Thursday.

The next "meet" is this Thursday coming but, again, I won't be able to make it but the Friday following (the 19th Dec) is our Christmas bash (at the Glan) and I certainly will be there then.

Soooooooo, I don't know what's happening myself yet - perhaps one of the club members who was at the Glan last Thurs might post something? More likely we will all be brought up to speed this Thursday and/or Friday.

You are, of course, welcome to join us on Thursday. I don't know where the trip will be but the cavers usually get back between 9pm & 10pm (at the Glan) whilst some make their way directly to the pub.

What I do know is that the information Les W (Wessex Caving Club & BCA) has passed onto us about insurance and passing the matter to the Cambrian Caving Council is being looked at as this does seem to be a solution. What I don't know is what is in the mind of the landowner and what other conversations/discussions have taken place Rolling Eyes

Sorry I don't know more yet Sad

Regards,

Ian

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PostSubject: Re: Spar Mine - Lloyd's - Hendre   Tue 16 Dec 2008, 1:45 pm

no bother thanks anyway i'll give young Wez a call see if he knows whats going on

Cheers Martin Very Happy
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PostSubject: Caution over access with Lloyd Spar Mine   Wed 31 Dec 2008, 8:24 am

I met up with some of you when you were last down Lloyds Spar Mine at Hendre whilst I was doing a hibernation count of the bats down the mine.
I counted over 40 rare bats in the mine (Lesser Horseshoes) which makes this a very important site in the area.
As I am sure you are aware, interfering with the access to a bat hibernation site is a criminal offence and so it will be in the best interests of UCET to ensure that they contact Countryside Council for Wales in their Mold office to discuss ANY intentions to do anything to the entrance.
Additionally I would ensure that you do actually have the permission of Lloyds to do anything to the site. After discussing this issue with other members of the Clwyd Bat Group Martin Lloyd was contacted to discuss what was happening/intended for the site. Apparently he knows nothing about ANY intention to cap/fence the access shaft - although he is aware of contact from a local caving group regarding access. He said he could not remember which group had been in touch but could remember that he had not yet even given them permission to access the site.

This is an issue that will have to be addressed through all of the appropriate channels.

On the issue of costs, Lloyds have the legal duty to keep their sites safe and as such THEY should be footing the bill, NOT a local caving group. Additionally ANY intention to charge cavers/mine explorers to access the site will result in alienation of UCET with other groups. Let me remind you that Grosvenor split from North Wales because of the then attitude of certain members in that club to restrict access to sites, digs etc and to stealk digs of other groups. As a result of their access restrictions, the locks to places such as Poachers were regularly removed so as to allow cavers free access to sites that we are entitled to.

Let us not have a return to the old attitudes, please respect other cavers and their sites, do not obstruct/charge for access to sites and do not tresspass on other peoples digs/projects. Yes I am referring to those UCET members who tresspassed on the Grosvenor Pet Cemetary project.

Have a celebration tonight and lets have a great New Year where we all co-operate together.

Batmancaver
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PostSubject: Re: Spar Mine - Lloyd's - Hendre   Sun 04 Jan 2009, 1:48 am

What a surprise! while were at it does UCET have permission to enter the North Henblas (pepe's) shaft im sure ive seen bats there aswel so please tell us all what your intentions are with every shaft or mine you come across.
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PostSubject: Re: Spar Mine - Lloyd's - Hendre   Sun 04 Jan 2009, 4:11 am

Speaking personally ….

I really don’t know where all this hostility and aggression is coming from.

Batmancaver
As you rightly point out, you met some of us recently down in the mine. Unfortunately I was not one of them as I was not there that evening.

I understand your concerns with the bats and the need to go through the correct channels and can say that UCET are familiar with the CCW and that we were recently in communication with them regarding another issue. I have no doubt that any action requiring them in the process will be honoured most especially as the Cambrian Caving Council is associated with them.

With regards to the permission from Lloyds; I have read what you say about your contact with “Martin Lloyd” and his comments. However, as I said in an earlier post, I understand there are 3 brothers, one of whom is very friendly with one of our senior members. I assume that “Martin Lloyd” is not the same brother (but I don’t know) and it is likely that this results from a loss of communication (which I’ll come back to).

With regards to costs, I understand your comments that Lloyds have a legal duty to stand the cost of works and not the caving club but, again as I understand it, this was the “trade off” for maintaining an entrance (as per the earlier posts).

Charging admission fees again, as per the earlier posts, was only mooted at the initial meeting and was not settled on. I have already made mention of the fact that the members were not all in agreement and I agree with you that charging an admission would alienate other clubs (which has already been discussed in this thread).

As for the Grosvenor pet cemetery, again (still speaking personally), my understanding of this is that 2 cavers went down a shaft and the Grosvenor complained to UCET. Upon investigation it was accepted that two of our members had been down but;

• One was a Grosvenor member
• The other was an ex-Grosvenor member
• They had permission off the landowner
• They were not aware of any ongoing dig/project
• They did not interfere with any ongoing dig/project
• It was not a UCET trip or a UCET sanctioned trip

Personally, I am very confused as it seems that, other clubs (in this case the Grosvenor) can “claim” a hole and demand that their permission is sought prior to entry by any caver with consequences if this procedure is not followed (even where there is no apparent evidence by a visiting caver of another clubs interest) and yet, conversely, UCET are being heavily condemned for trying to ensure that the Spar mine remains open.

With regards to your final paragraph, I believe that you are sincere in you ultimate line where you say “have a great New Year where we all co-operate together” – I hope this is so and I hope that other cavers (from all clubs) feel the same way.

MartyMarty
I must say I am very disappointed with your post.

I had hoped that relations between us were good and that any ill-feeling (which seem to have come about by way of mis-understandings) had evaporated.

However, your post with Pepe’s shaft appears to have been made purely to be inflammatory …..

We (UCET) do have permission to be there and I can further add that the shaft is locked and gated and that we have the only key. Furthermore, one of our members is a family member of the landowner and our relationship with the landowner is, therefore, very good.

As for bats in the shaft I can tell you there aren’t any as there is no access for anything to get into the shaft and there is no other entry into the North Henblas system other than the gated entry. For as long as I have been a caver this has always been the case.

Since the lock has never been broken (to my knowledge) I do not see how you could claim to have seen a bat in there as it is not possible (so far as I am aware) for you to have been in there.

If you have been there as a guest then you would know that the entrance is gated in such a way that not even a midge could gain entry and I can only conclude that your post was made with the intention of causing trouble for us.

I hope I am wrong.

Communication
I mentioned earlier in this post that I would come back to this ….

I think that, probably, the biggest problem here is communication between all parties.

On one hand I think it is probably impossible for all parties to be in touch and up to date with all other parties. However, what does seem to be happening is that different parties are jumping to conclusions prematurely.

The issue of bats did not manifest on this forum until after the visitation to the mine of “Batmancaver” and, as I made reference earlier, the club is aware of the proper procedure and, I have no doubt, will commit itself to doing the right thing.

The Christmas period has seen a temporary halt to the club meeting and caving and so these posts on the forum have mostly come during a time where communication between even our own members is very limited and because of this I have made this post “speaking personally” as I can only post what I know (which may be out of date because of the communication difficulties).

What I can say about UCET though, is that, having spent 2 years as a member, there is not a single member of the club who would wish to cause trouble for any other caver anywhere in the world. In fact, I have found every member of UCET to be very friendly, more than approachable and always keen to foster good relations not just with neighbouring clubs but with any cavers or even just people who are interested in popping into a cave or mine. I don’t know a single member who would not (and has not) given up their own time for the benefit of other people/cavers and I am certain that each and everyone of UCET will continue to feel the same way and act the same way. I have only ever seen decency, kindness and benevolence among the members and have never seen any malevolence.

Our objective is to keep caves and mines open and we all fervently believe that this is best accomplished by keeping all the proverbial doors open and maintaining positive relationships with each other at all times. Hostility and negativity only ever serve to damage any process which inevitable results in damage (in one form or another) to all of us as cavers.

Our next main meet is our AGM on the 15th Jan 2009 and I have no doubt at all that this matter will be the main focus of the meeting.

I do, truly, hope that everyone can acknowledge that UCET is making every effort to do this properly for the benefit of the caving community as a whole and any helpful advice (such as given by Les W & Cookie of the BCA in this thread) is always, of course, welcome.

Regards,

Ian

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PostSubject: Bats   Sun 04 Jan 2009, 12:42 pm

Hi Ian & UCET

Trust me, I have no reason to have ANY hostility or aggression towards UCET and it's members. I know a few of them and meet them around the place both above and below ground ... although why do I only ever seem to bump into Linda in Asda??

My comments about the bats and the Spar Mine was intended for two reasons.

Firstly, to keep the mine safe and open for the continued usage by bats. (Before anyone comments that there are 3 entrances and only the intention to do works on one of them I would just like to point out that the bats only seem to be using the ladder entrance and not the others.)

Secondly, to keep UCET from being taken to court for unwittingly commiting a criminal act. There is a lot of pressure on the government to ensure that offences under the legal acts are dealt with more severely. As the potential fine for harming bats is several thousands pounds per bat then you do the sums! Yes I know the full amount has never been fined but do you want to be the first.

As for the issue of one brother not being aware of what was going on, I raised this as an issue for you to be aware of and addressed so that everyone who needs to be aware of the situation is kept informed. On the issue of CCW, they are the government advisors that need to be approached before works are carried out on the entrance which is why I said you will need to be in touch with them. I would recomend that regardless of whatever other organisations you are working with that UCET personally get in touch with them and discuss the issues involved to ensure that you are doing everything legally.

Personally, I am not and never will condem any club for trying to keep a site open. I learned about the Spar Mine issues from another mine forum and then from reading the initial comments here. This got me worried with regards to the issue of paying for access to a mine and not about keeping it open. As with all of life, rumours can be damaging if believed entirely without question. My comments were to raise awareness of how other cavers in the area feel about unnecessary charging for access. If you look at Olwyn Goch a very strong case could have been argued for the GCC to charge visiting clubs a fee to help pay for all of the maintenance costs involved in initially making the shaft safe. As far as I am aware this issue has never even been raised due to the view being that primarily without those works NO-ONE would have been able to go down so therefore it is an advantage to all. I want to see this being the case throughout the area, without exception.

On the subject of bats and Pepys shaft then how the hell did they get in there? The shaft was originall 100% covered over, although very unsafely, when it was first worked on by Grosvenor. It has since been made safe and in the process I believe that the access door that has been fitted would not allow bats access. No permission for bats was required for this shaft because he was not used by bats originally. If bats are somehow gaining access then good for them and as long as no-one deliberately disturbs them then there will be no problems.

If any of my comments appeared aggressive or hostile then I do apologize. I celebrated my 40th birthday in December and I am still working my way through the various malt whiskies I was given so I will blame them!

My comment: “have a great New Year where we all co-operate together” IS 100% sincere. There are enough mines, caves, digs and project sites in the area to avoid stepping on too many toes. It will be unavoidable not to step on some toes when some of the older cavers dug sites in the 70's and then never returned but still class them as their digs. Personally if a dig is not been active for 5+ (open to debate?) years then I say go for it.

Once again have a good 2009 and I'll see you underground or in the pub.

Karl
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PostSubject: Re: Spar Mine - Lloyd's - Hendre   Sun 04 Jan 2009, 12:55 pm

Hi Karl,

Thanks for your post and thanks for clarifying the position - it is appreciated Smile

I haven't met you yet but look forward to doing so, as you say, either in the pub or underground somewhere Wink

Regards,

Ian

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PostSubject: Re: Spar Mine - Lloyd's - Hendre   Mon 05 Jan 2009, 6:57 am

Hello UCET. I've been reading this thread with interest and although I don't want to make hostilities worse, or be taken the wrong way, I feel I have to say something here. I will also say, from the outset, that very little of this is directed specifically at UCET, more so at other clubs such as GCC who I assume read this forum too.

I'm very active in the mines of North Wales and have been for a number of years. This includes the mines of Flintshire which I enjoy exploring and documenting with my close friends.

I am not a caver. I've never been in a cave and I've no intention of ever doing so. I don't wear a bright suit or a warmbac. I am also not a member of any caving club (see above) nor do I want to be. I do however, through some very good connections, follow what all the clubs are doing in the area, and I'm really starting to dispair.

The constant empire-building going on by the clubs is childish and ridiculous. All this "Club X is really freindly with the landowner, so club X slammed a massive gate on the mine, thereby beating Club Y to it so they can't get in without Club X's permission..." or "Club X has a dig going on in a mine, a few members from Club Y happened upon it without Club X's permission, so the secretary of Club X writes a snotty letter to Club Y telling them to keep of a mine they didn't dig, on land that's not theirs".

Like I said, I'm not even in a club, nor are thousands of others like me, yet we're the ones who get caught out because certain clubs think that somehow they've got some sort of right to go around locking things up, because they've been around for a while.

What usually happens is a mine that's been open and explored happily for years, such as Hendre Spar, gets explored by some "club" who decide they like it, and get some sort of perverse meglomaniac kick out of the idea they'd be the only ones allowed into it, so they approch the landowner with the usual line: "Errr you know that mine on your land? Liability. Dangerous. Can't have it like that. But we'll solve all your problems. We'll gate it and control access for you so we can ensure nobody without BCA insurance goes in..." And 99% of the time, the landowner will say, "erm, yes ok! As it'll not cost me anything, and it reduces my liabilities". And bang - there goes access for everybody except the smug club and their lucky friends. This has happened to nearly every mine in Flintshire now.

I would like you to promise me, hand on heart, that's not what's happened here. I would like you to convince me, as a regular explorer of Lloyds, you didn't go to the landowner with a pitch exactly like the above. Karls original comments and attempt to contact the landowner, who couldn't even remember the name of your club, only that they'd not yet reached a "decision", and the fact that it's you, not they, who will pay for the work (ok, us visitors pay for your work) rather suggests you approched them, not vice versa. I do hope though this is not the case and I am prepaired to be convinced otherwise.

I recently explored and photographed an interesting and important mine system with a few friends that GCC explored in the early 1980's. I won't go into specifics but I will say we've been very frowned upon, as GCC explored it 25 years ago, there was no need for anyone to go and do it again. Which is of course complete rubbish. The business with the pet cemertary dig highlights the absurdity of current territorial attitudes, and it's gone unchecked for too long. I'm really tired of seeing new caps going in all the time, with nice little badges of the offending club who took it upon themselves to put it there.

I'd like to finish by saying that aside from your intened locking-up of Lloyds, I've no ill feeling towards UCET as a club and wish you all the best.

Miles

(PS, I'm really not sure what to make of those goblin videos. The "Milwr Tunnel" is not called "Milwr Cave" though. You've correctly distinguished between mines and caves on your recent goblin videos, for which I thank you)
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PostSubject: Re: Spar Mine - Lloyd's - Hendre   Mon 05 Jan 2009, 11:56 am

Hi Miles,

I agree with your sentiments and your philosophy entirely (and thanks for your post Smile ).

The best I can do at this moment in time is put my hand on my heart and repeat what was mentioned earlier in the thread that one of our senior members reported to us that he had been talking to one of the brothers (I don’t know if it is the same brother Batmancaver had been talking too) who advised our member that his agents had advised him to seal the entrances because of liability issues and that our member offered a compromise solution to keep it open.

As I am sure you will have picked up from reading this thread, there are communication issues at the moment in that not all the proverbial heads are around the same table and this transient loss of communication is, of course, frustrating.

I appreciate there is a world of difference between a caving club approaching a landowner (for empire building purposes) and a caving club scraping together a compromise deal to save a mine to keep it open but for what it is worth I believe two things;

1) I believe the “events” unfolded precisely as our senior member reported to us (for many reasons, not least the fact that I respect his integrity but also for the fact that he had no reason to mislead any members of the club)

2) The issue of the mine having bats (If I understand correctly from Batmancavers post) will have a significant impact on any proposal to seal the mine by the landowners

The only things I really know for sure are that we have our AGM on the 15th of this month and this will form an obviously significant part of the meeting (at which time I hope any fog or mist will evaporate) and the GCC are having their own AGM a few days earlier and it may be an issue they look at too as it is also a mine some of their members have an interest in (although I have no direct contact with GCC and don't know)

I know that this is not 100% re-assuring to you in the manner in which you have asked but it is a 100% honest answer which is the best I can muster in the interim before the next meeting.

On a different note, I see you have attached a website to your profile and I assume it is your site? Assuming it is then ….. Very cool, I have browsed (and used) it many times and it is (pardon the pun) a minefield of information. Seriously, really good stuff and extremely useful.

And lastly …. Goblins … Well, they’re just a bit of fun affraid they don’t really exist, do they?

Regards,

Ian

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PostSubject: Re: Spar Mine - Lloyd's - Hendre   Wed 07 Jan 2009, 3:40 pm

Ian wrote:
Hi Miles,

I agree with your sentiments and your philosophy entirely (and thanks for your post Smile ).

The best I can do at this moment in time is put my hand on my heart and repeat what was mentioned earlier in the thread that one of our senior members reported to us that he had been talking to one of the brothers (I don’t know if it is the same brother Batmancaver had been talking too) who advised our member that his agents had advised him to seal the entrances because of liability issues and that our member offered a compromise solution to keep it open.

OK.

Ian wrote:


I appreciate there is a world of difference between a caving club approaching a landowner (for empire building purposes) and a caving club scraping together a compromise deal to save a mine to keep it open

Yes I agree, there is a world of difference and I appreciate you recognising that. On the face of what people know, the situation here has looked rather like the former scenario, but if it is indeed the latter as you say then you've certainly got my support.

I'll be interested to hear the outcome of your meeting, and how things proceed with Lloyds. I expect the issue with the bats (yes there are many in there) will add an extra degree of confusion and probably prevent a solid door going in, but lloyds could still easily grill it if they had to.

My understanding of the law is that Lloyds are obligated to "Take reasonable measures to ensure the public do not accidently stray into disused mine workings". A good fence around the opening shaft with a sign saying "Danger do not enter" covers them for this, it doesn't need fortifying or gating at all. Anybody actually climbing over a fence and ignoring warning signs wouldn't really have a leg to stand on trying to sue the landowner if they hurt themselves in there, as they would be there by their own purposeful action.

Ian wrote:


On a different note, I see you have attached a website to your profile and I assume it is your site? Assuming it is then ….. Very cool, I have browsed (and used) it many times and it is (pardon the pun) a minefield of information. Seriously, really good stuff and extremely useful.

ahhh, you mean www.mine-explorer.co.uk - yes that's my website. Glad to hear it's of use to you, thanks for your nice comments.

Good to see a club with a website where it's possible to communicate openly with members. Such a facility wouldn't go amiss with some other clubs, though often it seems they'd rather not be bothered with people asking them why they do the things they do.

Thanks again for your reply Ian and looking forward to hearing what is decided at your meeting. My preference for what it's worth would be to leave it just as it is and ensure Lloyds are aware that repairing the already existing fencing with a few signs is really all they need to do (though somebody 'legal' would need to check if I'm right there, but I'm pretty confident I am).
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PostSubject: Re: Spar Mine - Lloyd's - Hendre   Wed 07 Jan 2009, 3:51 pm

hi miles ive hopefully just joined your site "caveman mike". what we are ultimately trying to do is gain legal access to the spar mine as at the moment we are all getting in there "on the hoof " so to speak . and if we can do this we are "all" cookung on gas "or what ever fossil fuel you prefair " regards mike
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PostSubject: Re: Spar Mine - Lloyd's - Hendre   Wed 07 Jan 2009, 4:11 pm

Hi Miles,

Unfortunately I am not "gemmed up" on the legal side of things and I expect your knowledge in respect of the obligations of Lloyds is much greater than mine (again, no pun intended).

I am very hopeful that we will be brought up to date with the position at our AGM (possibly before) and, as Mike says, we are doing what we can to stay positve Smile I expect, though, that the issue of the bats will more likely prevail than any desire you or I might have (I don't know the rules governing access where bats are in situ) - we shall see.

I also agree with you that it is good to be able to "air" differences and communicate to resolve difficulties and mis-understandings .... it all helps to move forwards and so long as we all get what we want (access?) then we all win Very Happy

Regards,

Ian

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PostSubject: Re: Spar Mine - Lloyd's - Hendre   Fri 09 Jan 2009, 3:51 pm

Leahy Mike wrote:
hi miles ive hopefully just joined your site "caveman mike". what we are ultimately trying to do is gain legal access to the spar mine as at the moment we are all getting in there "on the hoof " so to speak . and if we can do this we are "all" cookung on gas "or what ever fossil fuel you prefair " regards mike

Hiya Mike

understood! Thanks for registering on ME too, I hope it proves worthwhile for you!
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PostSubject: Re: Spar Mine - Lloyd's - Hendre   Tue 13 Jan 2009, 9:49 am

Hi

THanks for your replies Ian, I am sure that if members of both clubs work together sensibly then there will be NO local issues in this area.

HOWEVER, that said, the onbgoing issues that are around at the moment do seem to be caused by some UCET members acting irresponsibly.

With regards to the cemetary shaft, please let us know who the Grosvenor member was because no-one else who is asked will say who it was. The reason that access was being restricted to the shaft is simply because the ginging was very unstable, so for safety reasons they decided to fix the ginging and then explore the shaft. After several weeks work they eventually dropped down to the bottom of the shaft to find that UCET members had been down the shaft in the meantime. Not only was this very frustrating to the people who had done the work on the shaft but they then found that whoever had dropped down into the mine had irresponsibly trampled clog prints on the floor and broken artefacts. Incidently it is known that it was UCET members who went down because they left some identifiable evidence.

With regards to other sites in the area then it is known that UCET members have been caught in sites that they do not have permission to be in by the landowner and when accosted have said that they are members of the Grosvenor. Actions like these both alienate the GCC against UCET and alienate GCC from the local landowners and jeopardises many years of good liaisons.

It is no point claiming that they were not on a UCET organised trip and that there actions do not represent UCET. They are a member of UCET, they are caving with other members of UCET and therefore they ARE representing UCET. As such then their actions need to be reviewed by your club because they are bringing a bad image onto your club and are jeopardising your relationships with other clubs.

With regards to MILES comments about clubs "owning" sites I believe that I can clearly state that this is not the intended actions of the clubs. Many sites are gated and locked because the diggers/initial explorers do not want their dig poached by other cavers, which is fair enough. Ultimately once a caving club gates a site then they are taking on some of the liabilities for that site. This is why many sites are left locked and gated for many years afterwards either to stop livestock or humans from falling down them. If at any time another caving club wants to visit these sites then all they have to do is request permission and a key will be made available.

Sadly it is other local cavers who feel that they have the right to visit a site that is causing problems in the area at the moment. One site, the Boat Level Tunnel, is now denied access to any cavers for many years. This is due to the irresponsible attitude of a local caver who broke the access gate, explored the system and then left the gate unlocked. As that system is quite dangerous with shale falls and loose ground then that is very unsafe for any exploring local kids which is one reason that the site is locked. The other reason being that when anyone walks up the Boat Level then it causes St Winefrids Well to muddy up. As this is a major tourist attraction in the area then the owners have always restricted access so as to maintain the crystal clear spring waters. This irresponsible attitude by some has now caused the owners to refuse any more trips and they have now welded the gate shut.

Sadly a lot of cavers feel that the Grosvenor is restricting peoples access to the Milwr Tunnel. This is not the case of the Grosvenor restricting access but is the utilities company who own the site who have insisted that we gate and lock it and restrict access. In fact under our legal agreement we are not even allowed to advertise that we take trips down the site and the plethora of photographs, videos, trip reports on the web could cause them some concern.

Once again I will state that I believe that if everyone works together in a sensible considerate manner then there will be no local issues. Following the split of the Grosvenor from the North Wales there were many years of tension between the clubs. With some members that tension, distrust, even hate is still there. I would not like to see the GCC and UCET heading that way.

Karl
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PostSubject: Re: Spar Mine - Lloyd's - Hendre   Tue 13 Jan 2009, 10:29 am

hi karl with regards to pet cemetary "raking up old news " this all came about when nick carter asked me to look into the situation .after a few phone calls we found out who it was a letter was sent to nick . so i would appretiate it if[ you ] would stop going over old news so everone can move forwords in a posative direction see you at the gcc agm regards. mike
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PostSubject: Re: Spar Mine - Lloyd's - Hendre   Tue 13 Jan 2009, 10:45 am

Batmancaver wrote:


With regards to other sites in the area then it is known that UCET members have been caught in sites that they do not have permission to be in by the landowner and when accosted have said that they are members of the Grosvenor. Actions like these both alienate the GCC against UCET and alienate GCC from the local landowners and jeopardises many years of good liaisons.


Karl

Karl,

I joined UCET late 2006 and, since then, I have never been been aware or been made aware of any instance where any member of UCET has been somewhere they should not be, have been caught and have said they were GCC.

Are you referring to an instance(s) prior to mid/late 2006 ?

Ian

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PostSubject: Re: Spar Mine - Lloyd's - Hendre   Tue 13 Jan 2009, 11:16 am

Batmancaver wrote:
Many sites are gated and locked because the diggers/initial explorers do not want their dig poached by other cavers, which is fair enough.

Oh no it fecking well isn't.

If a club explores a mine, and decides to do some digging in there, it is most certainly not alright for that club to lock the site up to protect their interests whilst the dig goes on.

Batmancaver wrote:
Ultimately once a caving club gates a site then they are taking on some of the liabilities for that site. This is why many sites are left locked and gated for many years afterwards either to stop livestock or humans from falling down them.

Err no, not in GCC's case. If they were there for safety as you suggest, they wouldn't be nearly as well fortified as they are. Having studied the infamous "GCC Cap" in detail ,they are clearly installed to resist all attempts of forcibly gaining entry and someone outside the club being able to enjoy the place. Livestock don't need 12mm thick solid steel to stop them wandering into an adit.

Batmancaver wrote:
If at any time another caving club wants to visit these sites then all they have to do is request permission and a key will be made available.

That's the way a lot of clubs would like to portray it works, but it doesn't. For a start, what if it's not another club who wants to go in? Like me for instance, I'm not a member of any club. What happens is we turn up to a huge gate with no name on it and no idea how to get through it. It takes a lot of asking around to finally track down who put the gate there, painfully long to figure out a way to contact them, months of not getting emails replied to before finally getting on a waiting list for a lucky chance of getting a 'guided tour'. Many clubs, I'm sure, make themselves as difficult as possible for outsiders to contact as they don't want the hassle of having to sort access for people all the time. This is what happens when you go around locking up site after site though.

Batmancaver wrote:
Sadly it is other local cavers who feel that they have the right to visit a site that is causing problems in the area at the moment. One site, the Boat Level Tunnel, is now denied access to any cavers for many years. This is due to the irresponsible attitude of a local caver who broke the access gate, explored the system and then left the gate unlocked. As that system is quite dangerous with shale falls and loose ground then that is very unsafe for any exploring local kids which is one reason that the site is locked. The other reason being that when anyone walks up the Boat Level then it causes St Winefrids Well to muddy up. As this is a major tourist attraction in the area then the owners have always restricted access so as to maintain the crystal clear spring waters. This irresponsible attitude by some has now caused the owners to refuse any more trips and they have now welded the gate shut.

Ahhh, yes I know a bit about this one. HBL, despite being of immense local historical importance from a mining point of view, is and always has been well locked up because the discharge from the adit goes into St. Winfreds Well, as the original spring dried up with the lowering of the water table (see Milwr Tunnel). Religeous types who think this mine discharge water was sent from god get in it and it heals them or something. I suppose when a load of ochre comes through the pipe it spoils the ambiance and illusion somewhat and proves it is actually just what it is. Mine drainage.

Sorry back to HBL. Yes I'm aware that extemely rarely (last time was in the 1980s?) GCC have been invited to have a look along the tunnel and the associated mine workings. As far as I can see, they did a p!ss-poor job of actually publically recording or documenting anything for anyone outside the club to see.

When you say access is lost for years, I'll remind you there never has been any access bar the occasional GCC trip. I think now that someone else wanted to explore it, this might have spoiled things for GCC which is why they are in a huff about it. Didums. I happen to know at least one of your members sneaks in via an entirely different route anyway.

Moving onto the overall issue of friction between GCC and everybody else, it's not what anyone wants. I've no issue with the existance of GCC and GCC have the right to explore the mines and caves of the area just like everybody else. I just want them to be a little less self-serving and appreciate they are not the only people in the area who enjoy these places and don't see why they need a golden blessing from GCC to do so.
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