Author Topic: Cave of South Wales Talk  (Read 742 times)

Offline mudman

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Cave of South Wales Talk
« on: November 30, 2018, 12:50:52 pm »
A few months ago, two of our members (BCC) were preparing to enter Ogof Draenen (the original entrance  8) ) when they fell into conversation with some members of Gwent Mountaineering Club. The GMC members mentioned how they often come across holes in the ground as they wander over the South Wales mountains and moors and wondered what is to be found in them. They then asked if it would be possible for us to give a talk on the South Wales caves to which they replied, "Yes of course, and we know just who you should talk to." So it was that I received an email on the possibility of a talk and I could hardly say no.
So last night saw me in front of an audience of over 30 GMC members giving a whistle-stop West-to-East tour of the Major South Wales caves with lots of photos that myself and Huge have taken as well as some that Brendan from ogof.org.uk kindly gave me permission to use to fill in our gaps. I finished up with a video that Andy and Antonia had also kindly given me permission to use.
One small glitch was when the video started I realised what it was I'd forgotten: speakers!  :wall: My laptop speaker wasn't powerful enough to fill the hall so I had to provide an unrehearsed voice over to it (sorry Andy and Antonia, your's is so much better).
The whole thing was very warmly received (I got a big round of applause :clap2: ) with a lot of interest generated (if the 20 minutes of questions that followed is anything to go by) ;D and some very kind comments on the photos and video.
I must say, I did enjoy myself, it is great to present something you are passionate about to an interested and receptive audience.

Of course, many thanks to Brendan and Andy and Antonia for letting me include their work. I pointed everyone to your on-line content so hopefully it will drive some interest your way.

Offline mrodoc

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Re: Cave of South Wales Talk
« Reply #1 on: November 30, 2018, 05:46:57 pm »
I have given talks on caving for many years and I always get an interested audience. They go in flurries with, after one, the word getting around so I get more invites. The current one on the Cheddar Catchment seems to be going down well. I am talking to groups such as the WI though rather than the converted outdoorsy types. The Old Ruminator does the same in our area.

Offline chunky

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Re: Cave of South Wales Talk
« Reply #2 on: November 30, 2018, 05:53:23 pm »
CaverKeith does similar in our neck of the woods. I've only ever helped out with one for a local scout group but I believe it always goes down well and all the audiences are non cavers. 

Well done to everyone who promotes our sport to the muggles, far too self conscious to stand infront of people and do this myself!

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Offline Huge

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Re: Cave of South Wales Talk
« Reply #3 on: November 30, 2018, 09:49:50 pm »
I am talking to groups such as the WI though rather than the converted outdoorsy types.

That last talk Mudman and I gave together, a couple of months ago, was to the Blaenavon Townswomen's Guild. There was a 90 year old in the audience who had explored the caves of Llangattock in her youth!

Offline Trig Gledhill

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Re: Cave of South Wales Talk
« Reply #4 on: December 01, 2018, 09:09:27 am »
You mad it sound like I volunteered you

I was merely saying that I'm not a commitee member so best to speak to a grown up

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Offline Stuart France

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Re: Cave of South Wales Talk
« Reply #5 on: December 09, 2018, 05:46:39 pm »
With the Will Millard series currently screening on BBC1 Wales at 8pm on Thursdays, the public is not short of caving and Wales underground right now.

I've given a presentation recently to the AGM of the Castlemartin access group which includes landowner reps from MOD/DIO, NRW, Pembs Nat Park staff, local authorities reps, other sports groups like rock climbing, fishing, local residents etc.  It was a fantastic opportunity and my talk was well received.

My latest talk was to the National Access Forum for Wales (NAFW).  This is a formal NRW committee with the same sort of composition as Castlemartin one, but on a larger scale in terms of contacts and influence.  Lots of positive feedback, and interest from two people representing landowner interests to come caving.

The village hall group where I live is now looking for winter evening talks, but I think caving needs combining with contributions from other local "extreme sports" to bring enough variety to that sort of audience.

Happy to pass on any advice in the light of experience to anyone else contemplating this sort of thing !





Offline mikem

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Re: Cave of South Wales Talk
« Reply #6 on: December 13, 2018, 12:17:05 pm »
The village hall group where I live is now looking for winter evening talks, but I think caving needs combining with contributions from other local "extreme sports" to bring enough variety to that sort of audience.
Caving is potentially far more interesting to the general public than the "look at me" presentation of most extreme sports. The fact that they get to see things in their local area that they will probably never visit & the mix of science, challenge & beauty should make it a popular event...

Mike

Offline mudman

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Re: Cave of South Wales Talk
« Reply #7 on: December 13, 2018, 05:38:08 pm »
The village hall group where I live is now looking for winter evening talks, but I think caving needs combining with contributions from other local "extreme sports" to bring enough variety to that sort of audience.
Caving is potentially far more interesting to the general public than the "look at me" presentation of most extreme sports. The fact that they get to see things in their local area that they will probably never visit & the mix of science, challenge & beauty should make it a popular event...

Mike

I'd agree with that, people are fascinated by what can be found within a short drive of their front door but will probably never be visited by themselves.
I was specifically asked for this talk to cover the major caves that the GMC members often see the openings to and then wonder what is below their feet. Quite a wide area really that takes in all of South Wales. An earlier talk to Blaenavon Townswomen's Guild (did I forget to mention that one :-\ ) was a specific request to cover the caves local to Blaenavon which Huge and I did a few months ago.
Thinking about it, I'm not sure how much justice we could do if a presentation was to cover a number of other sports. I had an hour allocated in each talk I have done and it was difficult to keep to that.