British Cave Research Association Newsletter July 2018

In this newsletter …

* British Caving Library Updates
* BCRA Publicity Officer
* AGM Notice
* 29th Annual BCRA Cave Science Symposium
* BCRA Stock of Back-Issues
* CREG Journal 102 – now online
* Hidden Earth 2018
* Hidden Earth Cave Science Photo Competition

News can also be found on the forum and on our Facebook page.

British Caving Library Updates

The British Caving Library at Glutton Bridge, which is managed by BCRA and part-funded by BCA, is looking for new volunteers to get involved.

In addition to ongoing cataloguing tasks, and other general helping, we are seeking people who would like to join the library steering group. If you think you might be interested, please contact Jenny Potts. Contact information can be found here.

John Gardner who, for several years, has managed a number of I.T. jobs related to the library, has now retired from his BCRA activities, so we urgently need a person, or possibly more than one person to…

Manage the library web site
Manage the Audio Archive
Manage the BCRA Archives site

These jobs require the usual set of webmaster skills (including a familiarity with HTML, Content Management Software and networking
issues) and the ability to act without close supervision.

BCRA Publicity Officer

Another post that we are seeking to fill is that of a Publicity Officer for BCRA. You would be in charge of a) setting up and operating an exhibition stand to sell BCRA’s publications and to answer enquiries at meetings; and ii) recruiting volunteer(s) to do this task at meetings that you are unable to attend. You would need to maintain a stock of publications (just a couple of boxes), and to make sure that it is topped up from time to time; and you may like to assist with (or take charge of) the design of posters and leaflets. It is possible that we could arrange to pay your travel expenses to meetings.

AGM Notice

Notice is hereby given that the 2018 Annual General Meeting of the British Cave Research Association will be held on Saturday 13 October 2018 at 12:00 during the BCRA Cave Science Symposium at the University of Bristol.

Please contact the Science Symposium team if you have any queries on how to get to the venue. There will be a short break in the symposium immediately before the AGM, to allow the admission of anybody who is waiting to attend the AGM, but who is not already in the room.

Important Notice: Please note that the Notice of Meeting, which we have to send to each of our members on paper will not include any agenda papers. Neither will the Agenda papers (notably the Council Report and Accounts, the Minutes of the 2017 AGM and any motions received by the secretary) be distributed on paper at the meeting. The agenda papers can be download or viewed in advance of the meeting. Additionally, please note that, because of the need to work on some of the agenda papers, these will probably not be available before the due date (three weeks before the AGM), this year.

BCRA’s publication, BCRA Annual Review 2017 will contain the 2017 Council Report and Accounts. It will be available for free download prior to the meeting. For those who do not want to print their own copy, a small number will be available to purchase at the meeting at a price of £5.

29th Annual BCRA Cave Science Symposium

This will take place on Saturday 13 October, at the School of Geographical Sciences, University of Bristol.

BCRA Stock of Back-Issues

BCRA Council has decided on a policy to drastically reduce the amount of paper back-stock of its periodicals that it holds. In summary, we are intending to send most of our back-stock for recycling at the end of July. If any person wishes to take ownership of this stock, you are welcome make arrangements to collect it from the British Library at Glutton Bridge before the end of July. This includes Cave & Karst Science, Speleology, Caves and Caving, and the C&KC antecedents – Cave Science and BCRA Transactions, plus some other items including Speleo Abstracts. The total volume is probably several car loads.

Trevor Faulkner did an enormous amount of work in trying to profitably dispose of our old stock to individuals and organisations, but there is still a large amount left in storage. Now that Trevor has retired from his BCRA activities, we have to take a pragmatic view of what to do with the remaining stock. The salient point is that, in monetary terms, the stock is not worth anything to BCRA – it was written off long ago, and we get very few enquiries for printed copies of our publications. One could argue that the stored items might still be of value to the caving and cave research communities, but this value is outweighed by the problems of distribution and the cost of storage. We are happy for any individual to take these items off our hands; but you will need to act swiftly because the storage space that we use for these items is only available for a limited further period. The library is usually only open on a Wednesday and you are advised to check first if you intend to visit.

The library will still retain (in most cases), two reference copies of our publications and we shall be retaining (in most cases) an additional five copies of each item for possible future sales. Additionally, we are in the process of scanning all our historical items, which will be available as free downloads. We also have a number of older items (e.g.
from BSA and CRG) which we currently list as ‘collectors items’ and which are not part of the current ‘pruning’ exercise, but will be dealt with before too long.

Cave Radio and Electronics Group Journal 102 – now online

CREG Journal 102 was published at the beginning of June.

Hidden Earth 2018

Please note that the date and venue for the annual caving conference, Hidden Earth, has still not (at the time of writing) been finalised. The venue we were planning to use has become unavailable due to building work. Messages will be posted as soon as anything more definite is known.

Hidden Earth Cave Science Photo Competition

In the past, the BCRA photo salon at Hidden Earth has included a “Cave Life” category. This year the category is being broadened to “Cave Science” and information can be found in the editorial in the latest edition of Caves and Karst Science. The precise rules for the new category are yet to be drawn up, but the intention is that the Cave Science photos that are entered into the competition must be accompanied by documentation that describes the scientific study being undertaken – that is, as with the former Cave Life category, it is more than “just a photo”.

Correspondent: David Gibson, BCRA Secretary