Author Topic: bca meeting 25/3 /2017  (Read 33724 times)

Offline JasonC

  • forum hero
  • *****
  • Posts: 1053
  • KCC
Re: bca meeting 25/3 /2017
« Reply #400 on: June 04, 2017, 05:43:03 pm »
Quote
It cannot be right to spend 15% of income on a library and other forms of elitism, nor is it right that amateurs should regulate and organise the training of professionals, nor that the Cave Access spend is running at under a half of one percent of annual income.
Thanks for taking the time to summarise all this info, Stuart.  Since you ask....
  • £10k does seem quite a lot for the library.  But before cutting it, I'd like to know what the consequences would be.  In general, I think libraries are good things.
  • Personally, I'm happy with £5k going to Ghar Parau.  That's less than a pound each.  I'll never go on a GP expedition, but I salute those who do.  It's fashionable to use 'elitist' as a derogatory term, but 'elite' means 'the best' and wouldn't you want to support the best expeditions?
  • Supporting youth/college caving would be an excellent use of funds, but why not do this in addition to expedition grants,
     rather than instead of?
  • I agree that it would be appropriate to increase the spend on Cave Access.
  • The money on rope testing and anchors looks like excellent value for money - I hope this continues.
  • Sport caver training is of course an excellent thing, but a lot of good works goes on in clubs and regional bodies - I've certainly benefited from some CNCC courses.  Is the BCA the right body to organise this? - not sure...

Online Topimo

  • SUSS-EPC-BB
  • obsessive maniac
  • ***
  • Posts: 412
  • School of Karst Rocks. University of NiFe.
Re: bca meeting 25/3 /2017
« Reply #401 on: June 04, 2017, 05:51:49 pm »
It cannot be right to spend 15% of income on a library and other forms of elitism.

I agree with most of your points across past posts Stuart, this one has thrown me a little.
Could you explain how the British Caving Library is elitist?

Surely libraries are the opposite of elitist, allowing the sound preservation of information and ease of access to said information to the library's patrons?

A little while ago I had a nice chat with Moose over a cuppa, recorded it, chopped it up and that audio file now resides in the Audio Archives for anyone to hear, even non-cavers. I didn't have to fill in any forms to do this, jump through an hoops, secret handshakes, submission fees. Just organised by word of mouth, by the caving community, for the caving community.

And Ghar Parau too I suppose. There is potential danger for things like this to be a bit 'old boys club', which I suspect is your point, but the university club I am a member of is very grateful for our support from GP on our previous expedition. It was the first (non-holiday, i.e. 'proper') expedition for a few years in the club and hence was a first expedition for most of us, what with the rapid turnover/progression rate of student clubs. This support made the trip more palatable to the club and students involved who may otherwise be put off by high costs.

I'm struggling to see any elitism here, but will gladly have my eyes opened.

Offline Cap'n Chris

  • forum hero
  • *****
  • Posts: 12242
Re: bca meeting 25/3 /2017
« Reply #402 on: June 04, 2017, 08:43:34 pm »
The elitism may perhaps be the prerequisite to be able to read in order to benefit from the use of the library.

Offline 2xw

  • obsessive maniac
  • ***
  • Posts: 465
  • Caving slag (but SUSS really)
Re: bca meeting 25/3 /2017
« Reply #403 on: June 05, 2017, 01:30:22 pm »


 Ghar Parau Foundation received the usual £5,000 grant towards assisting elitist expeditions.



You can jog right on with that one. Many of the students we took on exped that received Ghar Parau money really needed it - most of us live on less than £7k a year. This is the next generation of British cavers that can now survey, bolt, rig, rescue etc. "Elitist" my arse.

Online Ian Ball

  • forum star
  • ****
  • Posts: 668
Re: bca meeting 25/3 /2017
« Reply #404 on: June 05, 2017, 02:44:19 pm »
The elitism may perhaps be the prerequisite to be able to read in order to benefit from the use of the library.

The audio archive is great if you cant read.

Online Topimo

  • SUSS-EPC-BB
  • obsessive maniac
  • ***
  • Posts: 412
  • School of Karst Rocks. University of NiFe.
Re: bca meeting 25/3 /2017
« Reply #405 on: June 05, 2017, 10:39:30 pm »
May I suggest the installation of a temporary boxing ring at the Castleton Rotary Centre for one weekend only?

Or just use the Bearpit in the TSG as usual.

Offline ZombieCake

  • junky
  • ****
  • Posts: 775
  • I like Witches
Re: bca meeting 25/3 /2017
« Reply #406 on: June 05, 2017, 11:06:18 pm »
Quote
You can jog right on with that one. Many of the students we took on exped that received Ghar Parau money really needed it - most of us live on less than £7k a year. This is the next generation of British cavers that can now survey, bolt, rig, rescue etc. "Elitist" my arse.
Quite agree.  I work for a University and there are a lot of skint students out there. Upskilling and encouragement of the next generation is a seriously good thing in my view. Preservation of libraries and information is also quite a good thing.  Might not need them every day but the resource is great when needed.

Offline mikem

  • forum hero
  • *****
  • Posts: 2488
  • Mendip Caving Group
Re: bca meeting 25/3 /2017
« Reply #407 on: June 06, 2017, 07:07:03 am »
I'm not sure where he gets his maths either, as the library costs are 8% of income (or 9% of expenditure, as of 2015), or 12% if you include Ghar Parau...

Mike

Online AR

  • Black shadow
  • forum hero
  • *****
  • Posts: 1012
  • PDMHS, ATAC, ANHMS
Re: bca meeting 25/3 /2017
« Reply #408 on: June 06, 2017, 09:25:17 am »
If it hadn't been for the BCL, there's a strong likelihood that John Beck and Doug Nash's collections would have ended up in a skip - they organised transport and temporary storage at very short notice.
Dirty old mines need love too....

Offline CavingPig

  • regular
  • *
  • Posts: 66
Re: bca meeting 25/3 /2017
« Reply #409 on: June 06, 2017, 10:24:23 am »
Quote
You can jog right on with that one. Many of the students we took on exped that received Ghar Parau money really needed it - most of us live on less than £7k a year. This is the next generation of British cavers that can now survey, bolt, rig, rescue etc. "Elitist" my arse.
Quite agree.  I work for a University and there are a lot of skint students out there. Upskilling and encouragement of the next generation is a seriously good thing in my view. Preservation of libraries and information is also quite a good thing.  Might not need them every day but the resource is great when needed.

Just want to add another voice in support of this sentiment. I'm leading an expedition this summer with a very large proportion of students and the GPF/Alex Pitcher money is honestly instrumental in getting students out there. Three years ago on my first expo as a very broke student I used my share of GPF grant towards an SRT kit, as we weren't allowed to take club kit - otherwise I wouldn't have been able to afford to go on the expo at all. You cannot call breaking down financial barriers to get more young people into exploration, rigging, bolting, surveying, rescuing etc "elitist". And that rescue training gained through expo participation has also been put into use both in the UK and abroad to either prevent a full-scale call-out rescue operation or to considerably speed things along before the experts arrived, instead of having a big pile of students sitting around like lemons wondering what to do.

Online Ian Ball

  • forum star
  • ****
  • Posts: 668
Re: bca meeting 25/3 /2017
« Reply #410 on: June 06, 2017, 10:54:43 am »
If it weren't for the GP and AP awards then the expeditions which meet funding criteria, would be restricted to those who can afford it, so by the funds from BCA going to GP/AP, it is assisting an otherwise elite expedition be less elite, something we all agree is a good thing.
That's how I read Mr Frances post anyway. 

Offline Bob Mehew

  • forum hero
  • *****
  • Posts: 1193
  • breaking knots is fun
Re: bca meeting 25/3 /2017
« Reply #411 on: June 06, 2017, 06:05:50 pm »
Quote from: ZombieCake
Preservation of libraries and information is also quite a good thing.  Might not need them every day but the resource is great when needed.
I know of one club who have decided to forego insuring their library because of the cost of replacing it if it were ever to go up in flames would make the insurance premium very high; despite it being probably the best collection in the UK and possibly even the world on one aspect of caving.  Whilst BCL is not as good, at least it does cover some of the material.

Makes one wonder if we should seek to place in BCL photographic copies of such special material even at the risk of infringing copyright.   
« Last Edit: June 06, 2017, 08:12:36 pm by paul, Reason: Fixed quote tag »

Offline Dave Tyson

  • menacing presence
  • **
  • Posts: 195
  • WCG/UCET
    • Wirral Caving Group
Re: bca meeting 25/3 /2017
« Reply #412 on: June 06, 2017, 07:53:11 pm »
Quote from: ZombieCake

Preservation of libraries and information is also quite a good thing.  Might not need them every day but the resource is great when needed.
I know of one club who have decided to forego insuring their library because of the cost of replacing it if it were ever to go up in flames would make the insurance premium very high; despite it being probably the best collection in the UK and possibly even the world on one aspect of caving.  Whilst BCL is not as good, at least it does cover some of the material.

Makes one wonder if we should seek to place in BCL photographic copies of such special material even at the risk of infringing copyright.
The copyright laws in most of the western world are ludicrous and geared to keeping business interests 'in the money' - the likes of Elsevier (Scientific Journals), Sony et al (Music) etc.  The same laws govern even minority stuff including orphaned works.

I have been burnt by this - an obscure journal published in 1890, yet you cannot copy an article as the author might not been dead for the requisite number of years - they don't know if he lived to be 100+ and so assume the worst case.  Copy and be damned is my standard now! Some libraries are a bit more liberal, but most copyright libraries barely allow you to copy 5% for personal study and if its a short publication of less than 20 pages then its forbidden. This is where a hidden camera in a pen comes in handy...

Dave
« Last Edit: June 06, 2017, 08:13:29 pm by paul, Reason: Fixed quote tag »

Offline ZombieCake

  • junky
  • ****
  • Posts: 775
  • I like Witches
Re: bca meeting 25/3 /2017
« Reply #413 on: June 06, 2017, 08:53:18 pm »
Sort of library related: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-40173423 and a nice thing to do.

Offline Jenny P

  • forum star
  • ****
  • Posts: 618
Re: bca meeting 25/3 /2017
« Reply #414 on: June 10, 2017, 04:36:45 pm »
I'm not sure where he gets his maths either, as the library costs are 8% of income (or 9% of expenditure, as of 2015), or 12% if you include Ghar Parau...

Mike

If you look on the Library section of UKcaving you will find I have just posted a supplement to the BCL Report to the BCA AGM to explain more about the funding of the Library.  BCL receives a grant of £10,000 per year from BCA towards the cost of maintaining and running the Library on behalf of all cavers.

Offline Pitlamp

  • forum hero
  • *****
  • Posts: 4624
Re: bca meeting 25/3 /2017
« Reply #415 on: June 10, 2017, 06:56:52 pm »
Speaking as an ordinary run of the mill caver I fully support that amount being spent on the British Caving Library; it's a fantastic resource, administered by incredibly helpful people - an immensely valuable asset to British cavers.

Online Mark Wright

  • forum star
  • ****
  • Posts: 697
  • NCC, BBPC
Re: bca meeting 25/3 /2017
« Reply #416 on: June 10, 2017, 09:54:38 pm »
I have to completely agree with Pitlamp.

Thanks Jenny for giving the breakdown on how the £10K is made up. I think it's excellent value for money.

I've only ever used the library twice, once when it was in Matlock and Roy helped me research a possible expedition and once at Glutton Bridge when researching the Berger book, and I received an excellent service. I remember it being a hive of activity and even saw Steve Worthington doing some research.

I think Jenny and Mary and everyone else who donate their time deserve a medal.

Mark

Offline Kenilworth

  • forum star
  • ****
  • Posts: 610
Re: bca meeting 25/3 /2017
« Reply #417 on: June 29, 2017, 03:09:32 pm »
Your ideology is interesting but very far from the practicalities of how (South Wales) caving is operated.

do what you feel is best for all parties....

That is, perhaps, the most contentious statement you have made in all your postings. “Parties” have wildly differing views and some have acted to the (serious) detriment of fellow cavers.

We do not have consensus in British caving.

Without a governing body anarchy would reign. Pockets of power crazed tyrants would spring up and seize control of caves, gating and sealing them off from others. Malcontent insurgents would rise up and fight the pseudo autocracies casting aside physical barriers reeking havoc and chaos. The vast majority of cavers would get “stiffed” by the war and languish in a bitter world where the splendours of the underworld were either inaccessible or only available with a side helping of sour cream.

Actually, that all seems to ring a bell …..

Ian

I've been away for some time but I hope a late reply is ok. You may be right. Your vision of anarchy is certainly effective rhetoric. In your last sentence you seem to insinuate though that the governing bodies currently in order aren't really doing anything. I think that is likely true.

Obviously it is impossible to always do what is "best" for all parties, so priorities are important. Personally, my first responsibility is toward my neighbors, which I fulfill in various ways ranging from hospitality to diplomacy to secrecy to surrender of claim. Next comes the land, including the cave. Next comes my own personal wishes. Lastly (if at all) comes the law of the land. This works incredibly well for me, and I have many fulfilling relationships with places and people as a result. No consensus is needed to dictate individual right behavior.

If we individually do the best we can, will there still be parties who act to our detriment? Yes. That only means that we will need to keep doing our best. I don't think we need to fight artificial authority acting in our detriment with artificial authority acting in our favor.

On a large government-owned parcel containing one of the most intense concentrations of karst in my State, I have been working on various karst studies and bio-inventories for five years. Two years ago, because of supposed ecological concerns, my permits to do this work were rescinded and I was reminded that criminal prosecution was the penalty for unpermitted cave travel. I took the ecological aspect of this development seriously, and examined my behavior to see if I was doing, or could do, any of the feared harm. The basis for my restriction was invalid. Rather than waste my time on political struggle or arguing with ignorant bureaucracy, I changed my habits. I began parking on a private road and making a longer walk so as to avoid attention. I avoided work during weekends when the land saw higher use. I avoided work during the one day a week when the land manager typically made his little round. Since my car had been reported to law enforcement as suspicious in the past, I made acquaintances with local officers and informed them of my large scale karst research in the county (meeting policemen has been extremely valuable in many areas). Then I carried on in my work, which has recently finished.

This is a tiny and imperfect example of what I'm talking about. Individual behavior. All the governance in the world will not make people do the right or the wise thing, nor will it stop them from doing so. Therefore, why prioritize governance?   

Offline Kenilworth

  • forum star
  • ****
  • Posts: 610
Re: bca meeting 25/3 /2017
« Reply #418 on: June 29, 2017, 03:17:55 pm »
Another comment about caving libraries

The NSS maintains a reasonably thorough library, and it is by far their most valuable practical resource. Unless you accept all of the work of surveying, mapping, documenting, studying, and musing that has been put into spelean print as a collection of meaningless egotism, and unless you care to deny the possibility of progressive learning based on past work and future inspiration, then a library should be a priority of any caving organization.

Offline NewStuff

  • Vocal proponent of Open Access
  • forum star
  • ****
  • Posts: 714
  • www.dddwhcc.com
    • Deep Dark Dirty WetHoles
Re: bca meeting 25/3 /2017
« Reply #419 on: June 29, 2017, 06:03:40 pm »
then a library should be a priority of any caving organization.

No, *caving* should be a caving organisation's priority.
Permission? Wassat den?

Online droid

  • forum hero
  • *****
  • Posts: 2162
  • WMRG
Re: bca meeting 25/3 /2017
« Reply #420 on: June 29, 2017, 06:35:13 pm »
A priority, rather than THE priority.

Read some of the posts on here, NewStuff. Many of the 'exploration' based posts are asking for information, and that information is normally archived somewhere....ie in a Library.

I accept that Kenilworth has put in his usual waffle and dig about 'egoism' but the general point is a good one.
No longer 'Exceptionally antagonistic' 'Deliberately inflammatory'

Offline NewStuff

  • Vocal proponent of Open Access
  • forum star
  • ****
  • Posts: 714
  • www.dddwhcc.com
    • Deep Dark Dirty WetHoles
Re: bca meeting 25/3 /2017
« Reply #421 on: June 29, 2017, 06:51:39 pm »
Oh, I agree wholeheartedly that maintaining a library is right near the top of the list, no issue about that. No point in exploring something unless you record what was explored.

But surely a caving organisation that is not explicitly a library or conservation body should focus on caving?
Permission? Wassat den?

Online droid

  • forum hero
  • *****
  • Posts: 2162
  • WMRG
Re: bca meeting 25/3 /2017
« Reply #422 on: June 29, 2017, 07:18:01 pm »

But surely a caving organisation that is not explicitly a library or conservation body should focus on caving?

Absolutely.
No longer 'Exceptionally antagonistic' 'Deliberately inflammatory'

Offline Alex

  • forum hero
  • *****
  • Posts: 3841
  • BRCC, UWFRA.
Re: bca meeting 25/3 /2017
« Reply #423 on: June 30, 2017, 12:51:01 pm »
It sounds like the BCA is trying to run everything as one big expedition. This sort of survey library's and the like is perfect for expeditions where everyone is working to one goal... However in Britain that's not the case as people go caving for fun, as well as exploration so my simple question is it appropriate in this setting.

By the way, I am happy with the survey libraries it but I think people just need to remember to try and not run british caving as a caving expedition as not everyone has the same goals so its never going to work in reality.

I think its here were problems exist.
Anything I say is represents my own opinion and not that of a any club/organisation that I am a member of (unless its good of course)

Online droid

  • forum hero
  • *****
  • Posts: 2162
  • WMRG
Re: bca meeting 25/3 /2017
« Reply #424 on: June 30, 2017, 05:05:02 pm »
I disagree.

BCA isn't a big organisation, but it runs itself as if it was: too many committee members, too much beurocracy, too many people trying to establish empires.

Solution: thin down the committees, simplify the Constitution and make the whole organisation more streamlined.

Won't happen. Too many vested interests.
No longer 'Exceptionally antagonistic' 'Deliberately inflammatory'