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COVID Stage 1b advice from CSCC

Ed W

Just posted around CSCC members and on the Facebook page.  Hopefully will appear on the CSCC website soon,

Dear Southern Cavers,
It is with some relief that as from Monday 29th March that the national "stay at home" rule will end, and the long path to a return to something like normality can begin. This means that it is no longer illegal to leave home without a valid excuse, though the government asks that we all minimise the number of journeys we make. From Monday 29th it is also permitted for up to 6 people, or two households, to meet outdoors and for people to take part formally organised outdoor sports. (COVID-19 Response - Spring 2021 (Summary) - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)).

Given the above advice, it is likley that many cavers will be contemplating a welcome return to the underground. Whilst welcoming this long awaited event, CSCC would like to remind cavers that things are not yet back to normal and request that cavers carefully consider their actions when returning to caving areas in the South.

Firstly, please ensure that your actions are in line with the latest government advice, noting that the dates given may be subject to change depending upon how the infection statistics are responding. Secondly please plan your return trips carefully, remember you may be somewhat rusty after a year or so off so best to start your return gently (especially as rescue teams will still be hampered by having to adhere to measures to reduce t he chance of infection). Thirdly please be considerate to the local communities, the pandemic is not over yet.  As such some landowners may not be happy with visits until lockdown is completely lifted (as was the case last summer).  As such it is advisable to check with the landowner prior to visiting and not just assume it is OK.  Please let CSCC know if you come across any such access issues (either email one of the officers via the webpage https://www.cscc.org.uk/wiki/about/officers or the CSCC facebook page) so that we can spread the news.  Finally please try to avoid crowding popular caves and parking places in your eagerness to get back underground.
As yet over night stays are not possible, and it is likely that most (if not all) of the caving huts will remain closed (this is a decision for individual member clubs).

CSCC will endevour to keep you up to speed with the situation as it evolves via the usual outlets.

All the best,

Ed Waters (CSCC Chair)