Author Topic: Ogof Draenen landowner supports Twll Du closure  (Read 2357 times)

Online David Rose

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Ogof Draenen landowner supports Twll Du closure
« on: November 05, 2018, 02:17:47 pm »
Over at Darkness Below, a news report just out says the landowner of the land above Ogof Draenen supports the closure by the Welsh heritage body Cadw of the cave's fourth entrance, Twll Du.

https://darknessbelow.co.uk/landowners-speak-out-on-twll-du-closure/

In my recent BCA newsletter, I wrote an editorial lamenting the conflict that has existed for some time over this cave:

http://british-caving.org.uk/wiki3/doku.php?id=news_events:oct18

I've had a further thought which I toss out here for discussion. Is it possible that one reason for the amount of ill-feeling provoked by disputes over the cave is the way the PDCMG is constituted? As I understand it, supporters of there being only one entrance have justified their position by stating that the PDCMG is a democratic body, with (I think) 15 clubs represented and twice-yearly meetings. However, whatever those meetings might decide or discuss, I further believe that the three PDCMG trustees are nevertheless responsible for the current access agreement with the landowner - which grants access only to the original entrance, not The Nunnery or Drws Cefn, the (still open) second and third entrances.

If I have characterised the position accurately - and I apologise if I haven't, and invite those better informed to correct me - then the PDMG's democracy is somewhat limited, as it would still leave the trustees responsible fro the access agreement. Might that help explain the tension?

I'd be interested to read what people think. And please, let us keep this discussion polite.


Online Ian Adams

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Re: Ogof Draenen landowner supports Twll Du closure
« Reply #1 on: November 05, 2018, 03:31:39 pm »
The very issue of the role of the PDCMG, its democratic status and the interpretation of its constitution was a great source of debate (heated argument) on this forum around 2010. There were a great many arguments made with counter-argument and counter-counter argument spiralling into an aether of disarray. It became so bad that (as I understand it) the PDCMG complained about the content of the thread(s) to the then owners of this forum. As a result, (again as I understand it) a lot of that material was removed.

Some of the answers you are looking for are within the constitution of the organisation which is here;

http://www.pdcmg.org.uk/constitution%20master%20nov%202013.pdf

So far as I can recall, the wording of the constitution has not changed since the previous raising of this subject (except the annotated lines which are self-evidently transparent).

Quite probably, some of the previous forum material still exists here somewhere too.

I am a little loathe to repeat back the central arguments that caused so much trouble back in 2010 (which is what you are asking) as I expect doing so will likely see some form of repeat “war” which I am certain none of us want.

I do think that it is easy enough to see both points of view (or both sides of the coin) and how they can quickly polarise just by reading through the constitution.

I have tried to be careful with my words, if I haven’t managed it, sorry.

It is likely you will attract many more replies.

Ian

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Offline darkreef

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Re: Ogof Draenen landowner supports Twll Du closure
« Reply #2 on: November 05, 2018, 03:48:45 pm »
Perhaps it's better to summarise the situation as such:

1.  The owners, Peter and Brian, of Pwlldu Conservation only wish a single entrance on their land.

2.  They are more than happy to grant caver's access to the original entrance as it is in a secluded spot and not visited or passed by the public.

3.  They do not want any other digging (that may enter the main system) to take place on their land.

4.  Anybody disregarding the above risks alienating the landowners and losing access for all.


What on earth is wrong with that!


It is absolutely imperative that as a community we do everything in our power to promote and foster excellent relationships with owners who have existing or hypothesized entrances on their land. Hopefully, in that way, permission to dig in the future will be willingly given.

If anyone digs a further entrance, after obtaining the required consent, into a (hopefully) non-sensitive area of the Draenen system on land owned by someone other than Pwlldu conservation, their efforts should be applauded. Even better if it were a new entrance into an as yet un-entered region of the system.

Online Alex

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Re: Ogof Draenen landowner supports Twll Du closure
« Reply #3 on: November 05, 2018, 04:01:57 pm »
I thought the other entrances where not on there land, but I don't know the geography of the area. I think that's part of the issue is the PDCMG are not allowing entrances regardless of the location whether on the landowner's land or not. But I could be wrong about that.
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)

Offline darkreef

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Re: Ogof Draenen landowner supports Twll Du closure
« Reply #4 on: November 05, 2018, 04:30:02 pm »
No.  All the disputed entrances are (or in the case of Twll Du, were) on Pwlldu Conservation land.  PDCMG have an agreement with the landowners to administer cave access.

Beyond that the only relevant part of the PDCMG constitution is that :

4.10  The wishes of the following bodies which exist in the area shall be acknowledged, respected and appreciated:
         Commoners Associations, Welsh Water, Local Residents, the British Caving Association, BCRA, Cambrian Caving Council, the Brecon Beacons National Park, Natural Resources Wales and other statutory bodies.


Note the above 'acknowledged, respected and appreciated'.  I believe that is all that PDCMG are hoping to achieve.

Offline RobinGriffiths

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Re: Ogof Draenen landowner supports Twll Du closure
« Reply #5 on: November 06, 2018, 10:25:49 am »
I thought the other entrances where not on there land, but I don't know the geography of the area. I think that's part of the issue is the PDCMG are not allowing entrances regardless of the location whether on the landowner's land or not. But I could be wrong about that.

On their web site, under Entrance Policy they state:
"The current PDCMG policy is that the preferred way to conserve Ogof Draenen as the cave currently exists is for there to be a single entrance to the cave with access to it administered by the Group."

So at the moment, it's convenient that the four entrances are on land owned the the same landowner who shares the single entrance view.



Online maxf

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Re: Ogof Draenen landowner supports Twll Du closure
« Reply #6 on: November 06, 2018, 11:05:11 am »
Just out of interest how far away would you have to go from any current known passage to be under land that isn't under such control ?

Offline PeteHall

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Re: Ogof Draenen landowner supports Twll Du closure
« Reply #7 on: November 06, 2018, 11:12:53 am »
 A post by David on another topic suggests that there is a known passage, close to the surface, beneath another land-owners (CRoW) land.

So from that Max, I would speculate that plenty of the cave is under other people's land...
The distance between stupidity and genius is measured only by success.

Online David Rose

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Re: Ogof Draenen landowner supports Twll Du closure
« Reply #8 on: November 06, 2018, 11:26:14 am »
There are possibilities for a further entrance on someone else's land. I'm aware of one that is apparently quite good.

If one of the digs in the further reaches of the cave 'goes' and the enormous potential for extending Draenen far beyond its current limits is realised, then I would imagine the chances would be high, given that all of the cave lies quite close to the surface.

Offline royfellows

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Re: Ogof Draenen landowner supports Twll Du closure
« Reply #9 on: November 06, 2018, 11:35:16 am »
There are possibilities for a further entrance on someone else's land. I'm aware of one that is apparently quite good.

and the best of luck. It would be wonderful to see the final torpedo go into this blasted divisive rotten leaking ship!
Looking forward to NAMHO 2019. www.cambrianmines.co.uk

Offline Badlad

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Re: Ogof Draenen landowner supports Twll Du closure
« Reply #10 on: November 06, 2018, 12:57:15 pm »
Do you think you only need permission from the landowner to dig new entrances or does it apply to other underground digs as well?  I presume any underground dig could have conservation issues, making shortcuts opening up pristine areas to traffic etc.  Maps available on the web show other parts of the cave are under other peoples land.  The major dig at Rifleman's appears to be under a housing estate in Blaenavon for instance.  Do you ask the landowner who owns the entrance whether you can dig that site or the landowner who actually owns that bit of ground?  Or is it more convenient to just go digging without proper permission? :shrug:

Offline Duncan Price

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Re: Ogof Draenen landowner supports Twll Du closure
« Reply #11 on: November 06, 2018, 03:48:42 pm »
Do you ask the landowner who owns the entrance whether you can dig that site or the landowner who actually owns that bit of ground?  Or is it more convenient to just go digging without proper permission?

Technically you should as the landowner who actually owns the ground above the cave.  This topic has a long discussion of some relevance to this.

Offline Graigwen

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Re: Ogof Draenen landowner supports Twll Du closure
« Reply #12 on: November 06, 2018, 07:28:10 pm »
Do you ask the landowner who owns the entrance whether you can dig that site or the landowner who actually owns that bit of ground?  Or is it more convenient to just go digging without proper permission?

Technically you should as the landowner who actually owns the ground above the cave.  This topic has a long discussion of some relevance to this.

Well that should be no problem for people planning digs into Ogof Draenen. They can easily identify surface and mineral ownership using the excellent Grade 5 survey........oh.......I see a problem now.......


.

Offline frank

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Re: Ogof Draenen landowner supports Twll Du closure
« Reply #13 on: December 02, 2018, 12:59:17 pm »
Maybe someone could leak the survey via wiki leaks .....

Offline Huge

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Re: Ogof Draenen landowner supports Twll Du closure
« Reply #14 on: December 02, 2018, 01:23:23 pm »
No need. It's everywhere!!

You could even get a free small scale paper copy at Hidden Earth and it's on the web, along with just about every other survey you can think of (There was a link posted on here recently, which was quickly deleted).

Offline ChrisJC

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Re: Ogof Draenen landowner supports Twll Du closure
« Reply #15 on: December 02, 2018, 07:27:35 pm »
I haven't got one.  :'(
Chris.
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Offline thomasr

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Re: Ogof Draenen landowner supports Twll Du closure
« Reply #16 on: December 03, 2018, 10:26:49 am »
So Pete and Brian the owners are happy to allow cavers access as long as they are not visible to the public.  Are we so  hideous or offensive then? While fully supporting multi entrance access it would be a brave neighbouring landowner willing to stick his neck out  and permit another entrance , and get embroiled in all this controversy  they would surely invite some  hostile comments

Offline RestingCaver

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Re: Ogof Draenen landowner supports Twll Du closure
« Reply #17 on: January 23, 2019, 05:00:28 am »
It would be pretty unlikely that the owner of a small piece of the surface above a dig site at say Riflemans Choke would either know or be concerned about a small cave dig 100m below their property. But legally speaking, would the person who owns a cave entrance and who knowingly let's others into that cave to dig under someone else's land be guilty of aiding a trespass and have some liability for the consequences of that activity? If the diggers were permitted by the entrance owner to use explosives, albeit with indemnities in place, then 100m depth might suddenly seem too close for comfort, the effects of blasting might be quite significant on the surface property.

Oh, the joys and responsibilities of property ownership in a litigious society!

Offline 2xw

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Re: Ogof Draenen landowner supports Twll Du closure
« Reply #18 on: January 23, 2019, 09:45:13 am »
But legally speaking, would the person who owns a cave entrance and who knowingly let's others into that cave to dig under someone else's land be guilty of aiding a trespass and have some liability for the consequences of that activity?

very unlikely

Offline mikem

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Re: Ogof Draenen landowner supports Twll Du closure
« Reply #19 on: January 23, 2019, 10:30:45 am »
But generally speaking it's not a problem until it becomes a problem, so do your best to keep it that way...