• Hello From Descent

    The publication date for issue 289 is the 10th of December, meaning subscribers should receive their copies during the week leading up to that date. It is also available from caving suppliers such as Inglesport and Starless River, or from our new website

    New Descent board here:

Welsh Government/NRW mapping

I note that the Lle website now gives access to (among much else) an SSSI layer, as well as the four categories of Open Access (CRoW) land
- dedicated forest;
- open country;
- other statutory access (urban common);
- registered common

Go direct: http://lle.gov.wales/map#m=-3.45257,51.88133,9&b=europa&l=158;156;155;50;713;

or make your own mashups using the WMS and WFS endpoints.
Fascinating tool.  OK, this is the beta edition.  The first thing to do is differentiate the opacity of the layers showing Common Land and CROW Access Land which by default draw in the same shade of green so you can?t tell them apart.  You also need to reduce the opacity of ?urban common? way below 100% grey (the default) otherwise you can?t read the underlying map which unfortunately isn?t either the OS 1:50000 or OS 1:25000 so a lot of useful annotations like ?pothole? are missing.

Having adjusted the settings as above, you can see that most of Mynydd Llangattock and land over Ogof Draenen is ?urban common?.  This means that this land isn?t CROW Access Land governed by the CROW Act 2000 but instead is governed by the Law of Property Act 1925 regarding recreational access rights which are broadly ?air and exercise?.

NRW?s position, not supported by any external legal advice, is that caving is a form of ?air and exercise? but common land doesn?t include caves on common land.  This is despite the definition of ?land? in the LPA as ?including mines and minerals, whether or not held apart from the surface?.  LPA doesn?t mention caves, but the general idea is that common land includes the 3D and is not restricted to the 2D surface. Limestone from a legal viewpoint is a mineral.

Caves on urban common include Agen Allwedd, Eglwys Faen, Pen Eryr, Daren Cilau and several Ogof Draenen entrances.  Make your own mind up.



Had a play with this tonight and found that you can get OS mapping as one of the Backgrounds is Ordnance Survey (traditional raster). This gives 1:50000, 1:25000 and below depending on your level of zoom although, on my screen at least, it changes from 1:25000 to 1:10000 (?) rather too soon for my liking.


New member
How the devil do you adjust the opacity of the layer? I can't find a tool to do it anywhere!

Oh hang on there it is. Cancel that