• Descent 298 publication date

    Our June/July issue will be published on Saturday 8 June

    Now with four extra pages as standard. If you want to receive it as part of your subscription, make sure you sign up or renew by Monday 27 May.

    Click here for more

Bca insurance

Jenny P

Active member
BCA is still largely run by volunteers but don't forget that it also employs some people to deal with the day to day running of the membership system and other background office tasks which cannot rely on volunteers.  The insurance covers equipment owned by BCA as well as other items plus the public liability and landowner indemnity which benefits cavers by allowing access which might otherwise not be available generally.

BCRA owns the British Caving Library and BCA funds it so that it can be made available for the use of all cavers and people who need access to records involving caving, whether or not they are British, members of BCA or whatever.  This includes paying the rent on the accommodation the Library occupies and the salaries of two people to work in the Library on one day a week.  (This is in addition to a number of volunteers who take on specific tasks for the Library.) 

BCA funds expenses involved in placing of bolts and also conservation and access expenses incurred by the regions on behalf of all cavers.  So quite a lot of the expenditure which is covered by BCA actually benefits all cavers, wherever they are based and even whether they are BCA members themselves.

BCA doesn't have anything like the membership of BMC to draw on so doesn't have the luxury of having paid officers or the full-time employees needed to service a large membership.  With a smaller membership overall I guess it's fingers crossed that cavers are willing to stay engaged in the long term, even when things are currently so grim.



Staff member
My recollection is that the insurance package costs BCA around 40K a year.  Total membership subscriptions add up to around 100K.  I think there are four part time employees getting paid for barely a day a week, but that will add up.  12K for the library, 6K to GPF, bolts, training subsidies and all regional admin, C&A costs which are now adding up to a significant amount.  For example CSCC have 7.5K approved for C&A funding this year alone, DCA 3K plus CNCC similar and up to 60K to fund the JR on the Welsh Government's decision to exclude caving from the scope of its Access Reform Advisory Group work on legislative reform.  In the last decade or two there has always been a yearly surplus which is why the banked amount reached 300K.  That is all changing and there is a will to spend it down on benefiting the members etc.  It may well be that the insurance manager will be able to get a discount for this year but I doubt it would be enough to make much difference to individual club members.  Hopefully though BCA will be thinking of ways to help clubs who will be experiencing difficult times over the next few years as it is inevitable that memberships will drop until caving gets back to normal.

Bob Mehew

Well-known member
From the Insurance Manager's report to the 2020 AGM "All past low claims rebates have been received. 2019 low claims rebate at ?1400 has been received already in 2020 and will reduce this year?s premium payable."  I presume there will be a rebate for 2020, assuming there are no claims made.  It also sounds as if the rebate is already factored into the subscription costs.