Sunday, 11 November 2018

Provisionals'/Beginners' weekend November 2018

This was the biggest Provisionals' Weekend I have been involved with. We had 34 people come caving with us over the course of the two days and over 20 current club members helped out to make sure everyone had a great experience. Some were current SWCC provisional members, others had never been caving before, whilst yet more had some caving experience, but were new to SWCC itself. Well, they couldn't have asked for a better weekend to visit the club! It was a fantastic turnout with a great atmosphere and the age range was from 9 years old up to early 60s. The club was as busy as I have ever seen it, with people filling up the last available bunks on Saturday morning. But we all fitted and had a good time - despite the weather trying to upset matters!

Saturday dawned with the usual running around to get people in to groups and going underground. They all put up with me remarkably well as I ran around like a headless chicken trying to make sure all people had the kit they needed and were in a group suitable for their abilities. There were 9 groups going underground on Saturday (Sorry I missed grabbing a photo of Chris, and Phil's group). We all got underground by 11.30am and there were trips in OFD1, Cwm Dwr and OFD2 that day. Sunday saw slightly fewer people go caving, but we still sent 5 full groups underground.

The Long Common Room on Saturday morning.

 Brendan, Lee, Ciaran, George and Colin about to go in search of the Pom Pom
 Alex, Alex, Andy, Jo, James and Jen ready for Cwm Dwr

Alex, Nick, Sue, Helen, Rita, Celestine and This almost good to go.
 Sally, Malcolm, Fred, Bill, Lewis and Josh

 Edd, Roger, Neil, Pete and Inga

 Antonia, Duncan, Stephen, Mark, Tenzin, Judy

Alex, James, Valentina, John, Ian and Inma 

Claire, Emily, Jane, Emily, Guy and Andy

All groups had a great time underground and came back to the club hut tired, but smiling, and ready for a hot shower. Here are some photos showing what they got up to underground:

Judy, Stephen, Mark, Tenzin at the Trident.

Stephen, Duncan, Judy,  Mark, Tenzin at the Shatter pillar.

 Jane near the Mini Columns

 Bolt Traverse, OFD1- high above the river!

 The team in Bridge Chamber, OFD1

 Chris and Dylan in Pi Chamber

Dylan trying out a crawl in OFD1

When everyone returned to the surface there was loads to do. Andy and Antonia had arranged to show several of their award-winning caving films, including the latest St Cuthbert's film. The room was completely packed! With standing-room only available at the back. Thanks both!

Three of our Junior members -  Ellie, Emily and James - are heading to a Scout jamboree in the USA in 2019. In order to raise funds for this they were selling handmade snowman Christmas ornaments, cakes (with specially designed posters by Thomas and Matthew) and had helped cook a communal curry. Well done all of you!

Ellie with her handmade snowmen

 James, Meghan, Dylan, Emily and Ellie sell cakes in the interval of the caving film showing.
Junior members helping each other out with the cake sale

Despite the awful weather we still managed to have some fireworks and Andy, Dave, Brian and all their helpers wowed us with a 30 minute display. As always - their efforts to keep us entertained, even in dire weather, are greatly appreciated.


  1. Congratulations on getting so many new cavers underground.

  2. Excellent efforts by everyone. And very good attendance Claire. Amazing fair play

  3. Les enfants ont besoin de découvrir. C’est vrai qu’il ya suffisamment à découvrir dans votre région, mais à quel point le trouvez-vous divertissant? Satisfaire leur désir d’exploration et de partir à un voyage qui représente une expérience pour tous les membres de la famille, du plus petit au plus grand. Decouverte Martinique