The January 2017 Newsletter is now available.
BCA's response to “Britain's Greatest Adventures” TV series.
Members will recall that the result of the recent postal vote of the membership returned a clear majority in favour of BCA campaigning for CRoW to apply to going underground.
Following publication of the result at the beginning of January, BCA’s Council agreed that we should move forward as quickly as reasonably possible and requested that BCA Executive lead on this. An initial meeting was held at the end of January and in principle it was felt that the most effective course of action at the moment is likely to lie in close liaison with Natural England and DEFRA, rather than clear opposition to their approach. Indeed their existing guidance has been “clarified” a number of times in recent years and it is reasonable to assume that further “clarification” may be forthcoming if handled correctly.
In this respect careful diplomacy and measured pressure are key. This is not something we are going to achieve overnight, or indeed in the next few months but it is clear that this is currently the best way to bring about the desired result.
While this is going on, we will also be taking the opportunity to prepare our case, should our work with Natural England and DEFRA prove fruitless.
The letter accompanying the voting paper detailed a number of actions BCA would take. Work either has begun, or will begin soon, on all these. The only exception is that we will not yet be seeking a change in the Constitution. This is for two key reasons. Firstly we are not yet in a position to actually campaign for a change in the law and, therefore, do not yet need to make a change. Secondly, and perhaps more importantly, there is a considerable cost and workload associated with any change, so it is sensible to include any other potentially desirable changes at the same time. A number of possible items have been proposed, but these are currently still at the planning stage. It is hoped that some or all of these can be combined with the CRoW change before the latter becomes necessary.
Damian Weare (BCA Secretary)
13 March 2015
The January Newsletter referred to a number of changes in access to caves in Northern England. The CNCC website now lists a few more:
For full details, see the CNCC website.
This year's Party Weekend has now been confirmed as 12-14 June 2015, running as a combined event with the BCRC. It promises to be a must-be-at event. Further information is available here. Specific AGM information is available here.
The results of the recent poll on CRoW have been received.
The question was: Should BCA, on your behalf, campaign for The Countryside and Rights of Way Act to apply to going underground? and of the 2,270 votes case, 4 were found to be invalid. Of the remainder 1402 (61.9%) votes “yes”, and 864 (38.1%) voted “no”.
The full report from Electoral Reform Services is available for anyone who is interested.
Thank you, on behalf of BCA Council, to all who those members who voted. Council's January meeting will now consider how to proceed from here.
Damian Weare, BCA Secretary - 22nd December 2014
BCA membership rates for 2015 once again remain unchanged for all categories.