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Peak Cavern's Far Sump Extension
The Rasp Upstream Sump.
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The upstream sump of the Rasp Streamway (at the far western end of Far Sump Extension) has been receiving more attention from Robbie Shone and team. This was last looked at in June 1998 (see link below) when the first sump was passed to discover a short section of passage leading to a second sump. The roof of the first sump has now been 'excavated' turning it into a duck. An investigation with a hand-held diving set is going ahead today (18th Sept). The hope is that it is just another short sump that can be pumped or removed.

UPDATE: The second sump has formed on a mineral vein and was found to be very narrow with jagged walls. Visability reduced to nil as soon as the diver entered the water. Due to the awkward nature of the passage it was decided to opt for plan 'B' rather than try to push it underwater. A pump was employed but this proved to be inefficient. Even so, the water level was reduced by a few inches. The hope is that this second sump will be like the first so a return with a better pump is planned.

previous related report 06/1998
next related report 10/2004

Access to Devonshire Cavern
Report From: Jenny Potts, Derbyshire Caving Association Secretary/Treasurer.
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It has just been reported on 9 Sept. 2004 that large rocks have been piled against the entrance of Devonshire Mine, Matlock Bath preventing access. This is the gated lower entrance by the footpath (the only official entrance) and, as far as we know, no problems with visiting groups have been notified to DCA by the landowner. We are currently investigating who has placed these rocks, and why, and we will attempt to get access restored as soon as possible. Please avoid Devonshire Mine altogether until further notice - we will keep you informed. Please do not attempt to use any of the now blocked entrances higher up the hillside to enter the mine.
UPDATE: Enquiries established that this had been done by persons unknown without the permission of the Landowner and that the Landowner was happy to have the rocks removed and access re-instated. A working party has now cleared the gate and a notice will be placed by the entrance to the mine explaining the situation with regard to access. It appears that there may have been some problems recently affecting other residents in the road - in particular thoughtless behaviour by young people coming down the road after a visit - and this has upset someone locally. (Problems reported relate to noisy behaviour, dropped litter, etc.) It is important to emphasise to all party leaders that young people must be supervised properly, both when walking up the road to the Mine and when they leave after their visit.

CO2 Pollution in Knotlow and Hillocks
Report From: Jenny Potts, Derbyshire Caving Association.
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Excess CO2 was reported in the Knotlow/Hillocks connection (Meccano Passage) in mid-July and confirmed later that week by other cavers using detector equipment. Later in the month other cavers reported that the problem appeared to be no longer present. As always, be alert for the symptoms of excess CO2 / depleted oxygen levels which appear intermittently in this system. Dave Webb, DCA Conservation Officer, has now replaced the book in the ammo box at the base of the climbing shaft of Knotlow Mine. The format of the new book is slightly different to allow one page per entry and to encourage a fuller report and contact details from those who wish to provide more information. For example it helps to know the prevailing surface weather conditions and if there is any muck spreading going on. Otherwise everything is back to normal and we would thank you in advance for your continued support. Dave has placed a summary in the box of the most recent entries prior to the last book becoming waterlogged. Please don't hesitate to contact Dave or a member of the team at access@thedca.org.co.uk if you need, or wish to provide, further information. Many thanks again for your help.

previous related report 06/2004
next related report 10/2005

Pollution in Youd's Level
Report From: Jenny Potts, Derbyshire Caving Association.
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Following on from concerns regarding pollution in the entrance adit to Youd's Level expressed at Underground Conservation Forum and Cave Liaison meetings, DCA Conservation Officer Dave Webb visited the site with Dave Ottewell of the Environment Agency on July 13th 2004, as planned, to inspect and take samples. As the site is in an SSSI it is necessary to pass through the pollution in order to carry out monitoring duties - clearly an unsatisfactory state of affairs. Dave Ottewell has submitted the samples taken for analysis and the DCA are hopeful that something positive will come of their efforts.

Seffield University Speliological Society Treatened with Closure
Report From: Jenny Potts, Derbyshire Caving Association.
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Sheffield University Spel. Soc. have been told by "USport" (a joint partnership of university and union which runs all the sport and is not answerable to the students) that they are to be closed down before the new term (along with 7 other "outdoor activity" clubs). SUSS are attempting to fight this and may be able to form a separate club, not financially supported by USport but linked to the University in some way. They are concerned that an attempt may be made by USport to sell off their equipment to outside caving clubs before they are able to sort things out, so they appeal to clubs: please do not attempt to buy caving gear being sold off in this way. Advice is being sought from Council of Higher Education Caving Clubs, BCA, DCA and BCRA - everyone is trying to help.

next related report 11/2004

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