Winnat's Head Cave
|Regions \ Peak District \ Castleton \ Winnat's Head Cave|
Grid Reference: SK 1314 8282
Altitude: 395m Length 610m.
Call at Winnats Head Farm for permission.
Loose and scary. Boulder choke has moved, recommend you find another cave!
Description here 
Before 1976, Winnats Head Cave was little more than a 6m crawl. Then Keith 'Ben' Bentham began excavations. He worked on his own for most of the time clearing a way through the small crawl into a small chamber. He then worked with help from members (Stuart Smith and A.N.Other) of Orpheus CC on clearing out another blocked crawl on the opposite side of the chamber. Unfortunately he was not present on the day a breakthrough was made into the Main Chamber.
Ben began digging again this time with help from Eldon CC and they managed to dig down through boulders for more than 9m. Chris Fox was also digging in the cave at the end of the phreatic tunnel leading out of the main chamber.
One evening Chris and Ben met in the cave and they decided to abandon their leads and push a new one together. That night 12 February 1978 they managed to dig through precariously hanging boulders with spaces between until they free climbed a small pitch to find Cornwall Avenue and Fox chamber. Shortly after this discovery a climb along a ledge from Cornwall Avenue out towards Fox chamber led to a small Hole and the passages of Harper Hill Series.
Over the years people tried digging down through the boulders in Fox chamber then finally a breakthrough was made into the Sewer by Mark Loftus and others of Disley Undergropund caving club. Beyond the Sewer work continue in Wigwam aven.
References and Further Reading
Caves of Derbyshire TD Ford and DW Gill (1984)