Author Topic: "Ben" Bentham  (Read 3003 times)

Offline danthecavingman

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"Ben" Bentham
« on: September 10, 2005, 02:42:30 pm »
:(  Sad news,

Just noticed on Peak District Caving that Keith "Ben" Bentham died at the end of August from cancer. Although he was stubborn and a bit of an awkward bugger his contibution to Derbyshire caving was huge, especially the work he did in the Lathkill area. The bypass to the Wind Tunnel in Peak Cavern was also his doing and resulted in the discovery of the White River Series. Some of his projects were controversial and upset a few people but that never seemed to bother him.
I caved with Ben a few times and I think all the trips I went on with him eventually led to more cave being found even if some of it was obscure. My enduring memory of Ben was of him spluttering like a half drowned rat on in trip in Bagshaw. We had gone up to Namread Aven to see if the sump was open hoping to get through to the Hollywood Bowl. There were a couple of inches of airspace and we had to knock flakes of the roof to get through - Ben never liked getting wet and some strong language was uttered on the other side.

Ben had given up caving last time I saw him which was at P.B.Smith's funeral. He said he had done caving and he had decided he was going to climb every single Munroe in Scotland and deliberately spent the night on Ben Macdui looking for the "Old Man of the Mist". That's exactly how Ben worked - he was determined and when something was "done" he would move on.

I'm sure he will be missed by many Derbyshire cavers who knew him.

RIP Ben.
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Offline bubba

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"Ben" Bentham
« Reply #1 on: September 10, 2005, 03:29:46 pm »
RIP :(

I never knew Ben but always admired his underground exploits, and have probably been places that were only there thanks to him.

(image linked from Peak District Caving)

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Offline Pitlamp

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"Ben" Bentham
« Reply #2 on: September 11, 2005, 07:22:13 pm »
Well said Dan.

Offline graham

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"Ben" Bentham
« Reply #3 on: September 12, 2005, 07:10:25 pm »
Only met Ben a few times but always admired his attitude.

He will be sadly missed.
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Online Mrs Trellis

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"Ben" Bentham
« Reply #4 on: September 14, 2005, 10:08:36 am »
Wherever he is - I bet he's got 'em digging.

Mrs Trellis
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North Wales

Offline Dickie

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"Ben" Bentham
« Reply #5 on: September 15, 2005, 07:57:38 am »
I knew Ben and caved with him many times.

When he was digging that hairy stuff at the bottom of Nettle, he lived in a hen hut at the farm so he'd be closer to "work".

He drove the muddiest Reliant 3-wheeler on the planet!

Visiting him in Winter when he was the Eldon Librarian, found him in bed to keep warm, fully clothed including beanie, because he was more interested in buying digging gear than paying heating bills.

He was a very capable sporting caver as well as a digger, he was with me down Vulcan in Nick Pot when I smashed my arm.

One other odd thing (of the many!), he couldn't stand people whistling near him - it caused a bad reaction from him!
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Offline Brains

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"Ben" Bentham
« Reply #6 on: September 15, 2005, 10:40:14 am »
Only met the man a few times, but knew him from his digs and extensions. A sad day for caving. Condolences to his friends and family


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