Individual Membership of CSCC

Discussion about CSCC related issues.
Les Williams
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Individual Membership of CSCC

Post by Les Williams » Sun 05 Feb 2006 23:51

Do we want it?
Les Williams
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DaveGrosvenor
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Post by DaveGrosvenor » Mon 06 Feb 2006 11:36

Why would an individual want to be a member of the CSCC?

Access to caves is not allowed on an individual basis, but through clubs ..

Les Williams
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Post by Les Williams » Mon 06 Feb 2006 19:00

I don't disagree with you, I just asked the question to start a debate on the subject.
CSCC is seeking guidance on what cavers expect of it in the brave new world that is caving!
Individual membership was one idea that was mooted by some, having a public debate on this was seen as a good idea.
Les Williams
BCA P & I Officer & Webmaster
CSCC C&A Officer
WCC Caving Secretary
Hidden Earth Conference Manager
In my spare time I sometimes go caving...

Les Williams
Posts: 92
Joined: Fri 30 Dec 2005 15:48
Location: Wells, Somerset, UK.
Contact:

Post by Les Williams » Wed 08 Feb 2006 21:38

DaveGrosvenor wrote: Access to caves is not allowed on an individual basis, but through clubs ..
Whilst this may be true for some caving regions it is NOT true in the CSCC area (eg. Mendip)
Individuals can get keys for access to most of Mendips locked systems and do not need to be members of any caving organisation. CSCC currently believes (Quite rightly IMHO) that cave access should be as freely available as possible. There is a need to protect some of the caves and more restrictive access arangements are in place for these systems, but the majority of Mendip caves (Including most CSCC controlled and CCC Ltd. controlled Caves) have no real access controls apart from knowing where to get the key!
Les Williams
BCA P & I Officer & Webmaster
CSCC C&A Officer
WCC Caving Secretary
Hidden Earth Conference Manager
In my spare time I sometimes go caving...

David Cooke
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Post by David Cooke » Thu 09 Feb 2006 14:05

DaveGrosvenor wrote:Access to caves is not allowed on an individual basis, but through clubs ..
I think there is a difference between the right to hold a CSCC Key and the right to access.

Any bona-fide individual caver has the right to access by turning up at a club hut and asking for a CSCC key. The test is whether you are a bona-fide caver, not your membership of any organisation.

A bona-fide caver is a person who is not a danger to themselves or the cave. For example I would think twice about issuing a key to a group of 15 with no better kit than trainers and hand torches.

It is true, and correct in my opinion, that CSCC keys are held by clubs not individuals.
Dave Cooke
BCA IT Working Party, BCA Web Services, National Cave Registry Co-ordinator, CSCC Webmaster

DaveGrosvenor
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Joined: Mon 06 Feb 2006 11:23

bona fide caver

Post by DaveGrosvenor » Thu 09 Feb 2006 16:54

It is certainly not true that access on Llangattock is only available to clubs
on some caving list e.g. the CSCC member club list .. similar constraints operate for the CNCC area.

It seems established practice that clubs have to join regional caving councils to get access.. This is an understandable reason to join

If one gets access without joining no one would join.

However -- What constitues a bona-fide caver?

Access to Slaughter was withdrawn at one time because of a need to prove everyone on a trip had insurance. As the Forest is in England -- is it within the sphere of influence of the CSCC?

Is insurance necessary to be a bona-fide caver?

I do not understand why membership of the BCA which ensures everyone has insurance does not come with any access rights to caves.

I can understand why clubs may be custodians of keys, but I do not see why it should be required to be a member of a club.

Graham M
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Re: bona fide caver

Post by Graham M » Thu 09 Feb 2006 17:12

DaveGrosvenor wrote:I do not understand why membership of the BCA which ensures everyone has insurance does not come with any access rights to caves.
It does, Access bodies who are members of BCA (for insurance) are obliged to provide access equally to all members of BCA (within the terms of any agreements they have, i.e. novice limits, numbers limits, leaders required. etc.)

But as to the substantive question of this thread.

No.
Caving is for life, not just for Xmas

DaveGrosvenor
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Llangattock access body

Post by DaveGrosvenor » Fri 10 Feb 2006 18:11

Does the Llangattock cave management committee use BCA insurance?

If it does then its rules for access are in breach of this condition. However does breaching this condition invalidate their insurance? I suspect not..so why would they change their procedures?

DaveGrosvenor
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Who should join the CSCC?

Post by DaveGrosvenor » Fri 10 Feb 2006 18:29

Having led this forum merrily astray

The original poster wanted to establish if individuals wanted to join the CSCC

I was perplexed because I could not see what an individual would get out of it..

The answer is clearly nothing and also there seems precious little reason for a club to join unless it is a custodian of keys.

If I did not already know that the CSCC seems to organise people into doing things for the good of the caving community ... e.g. talking with the bat protectors at Browns Folly

I would question whether there was a need for the CSCC.

David Cooke
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Re: Who should join the CSCC?

Post by David Cooke » Fri 10 Feb 2006 18:59

DaveGrosvenor wrote:Having led this forum merrily astray
I was about to ask if you wanted to start a new topic? You raise some questions that are worth airing.

DaveGrosvenor wrote:The original poster wanted to establish if individuals wanted to join the CSCC

I was perplexed because I could not see what an individual would get out of it..

The answer is clearly nothing and also there seems precious little reason for a club to join unless it is a custodian of keys.

If I did not already know that the CSCC seems to organise people into doing things for the good of the caving community ... e.g. talking with the bat protectors at Browns Folly

I would question whether there was a need for the CSCC.
To some extent the CSCC is a victim of its own high ideals. It does not coerce clubs into joining by limiting access to its own members. The CSCC's membership has been in decline for ages. A decline that has accelerated in recent times.

To paraphrase a well know quote: Ask not what the CSCC can do for you but ask what you can do for the CSCC.

Joining the CSCC demonstrates that you support its aims and objectives and thus the caving community as a whole.
Dave Cooke
BCA IT Working Party, BCA Web Services, National Cave Registry Co-ordinator, CSCC Webmaster

David Cooke
Site Admin
Posts: 301
Joined: Thu 29 Dec 2005 23:22
Location: Axbridge, Somerset, UK

Re: bona fide caver

Post by David Cooke » Fri 10 Feb 2006 19:08

DaveGrosvenor wrote: Access to Slaughter was withdrawn at one time because of a need to prove everyone on a trip had insurance. As the Forest is in England -- is it within the sphere of influence of the CSCC?
No, due to some quirk of history the Forest of Dean comes under the Cambrian Caving Council.

It does have its own Conservation and Access Group.

Semi-autonomous?
Dave Cooke
BCA IT Working Party, BCA Web Services, National Cave Registry Co-ordinator, CSCC Webmaster

Les Williams
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Re: Who should join the CSCC?

Post by Les Williams » Fri 10 Feb 2006 19:32

CSCC carries out many functions on behalf of cavers generally. It has many roles, all of which require volunteers. We currently have vacancies within CSCC's officers due to a lack of volunteers!
I believe the idea of individual membership is to offer a route to inclusivity at meetings which allows more than just the club reps (meetings are already open to all, but the perception is that individuals are unable to influence these meetings). This in turn is hoped to provide more volunteers.
The basis for any form of individual membership is yet to be decided.
The purpose for starting this debate is to ascertain if Individual Membership is wanted, needed or at all desirable. If the debate shows a need for some form of wider membership the the next step is to determine what form this membership would take and what rights and privilages should be due to individuals.
This is part of a wider consultation about what people want or expect from CSCC which has been started so that CSCC can focus its attention and its volunteers in the direction which will be most productive for caving as a whole .
Next step after debate is a questionaire. Watch this space.
Les Williams
BCA P & I Officer & Webmaster
CSCC C&A Officer
WCC Caving Secretary
Hidden Earth Conference Manager
In my spare time I sometimes go caving...

Graham M
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Re: Who should join the CSCC?

Post by Graham M » Sat 11 Feb 2006 19:54

LesW wrote:Next step after debate is a questionaire. Watch this space.
Les, how will you ensure that such a questionnaire actually reaches mendip cavers, apart from the half-dozen who read this site?

How, for example will you get it to the ordinary members of my club, without invloving that club in additional expense?

Unless you get widespread agreement and support for such a move, it will fail and be considered as no more than one more clique.
Caving is for life, not just for Xmas

Les Williams
Posts: 92
Joined: Fri 30 Dec 2005 15:48
Location: Wells, Somerset, UK.
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Re: Who should join the CSCC?

Post by Les Williams » Sat 11 Feb 2006 20:54

Graham M wrote: Les, how will you ensure that such a questionnaire actually reaches mendip cavers, apart from the half-dozen who read this site?

How, for example will you get it to the ordinary members of my club, without invloving that club in additional expense?

Unless you get widespread agreement and support for such a move, it will fail and be considered as no more than one more clique.
I believe the questionnaire will appear on the CSCC website in the next week or so.

To set the record straight, I am not championing individual membership. I am pretty neutral on the idea at present although overwhelming support for or against it may convince me either way.

At the CSCC meeting last week individual membership was discussed and it was decided to try and determine if there really was a need for it before any changes were implimented.
The idea was further expanded upon to try and discover what cavers expected from their regional council generally.

The forthcoming questionnaire should give us an indication of cavers wishes, along with open informed public debate, hence the reason why I attempted to provoke debate on this forum.
There are plans to publicise the debate and questionnaire widely through a variety of routes over the next few weeks. It would be useful if clubs could publicise it for us (CSCC) via their websites, mail lists, meetings and newsletters, etc. although there is no obligation on their part, except perhaps to try and ensure their membership are informed and have the oportunity to take part.
Les Williams
BCA P & I Officer & Webmaster
CSCC C&A Officer
WCC Caving Secretary
Hidden Earth Conference Manager
In my spare time I sometimes go caving...

David Cooke
Site Admin
Posts: 301
Joined: Thu 29 Dec 2005 23:22
Location: Axbridge, Somerset, UK

Re: Who should join the CSCC?

Post by David Cooke » Sat 11 Feb 2006 23:36

Graham M wrote:Les, how will you ensure that such a questionnaire actually reaches mendip cavers, apart from the half-dozen who read this site?
There are plans to distribute the questionaire more widely than this forum, however you still make a good point.

The idea behind the questionaire is to see if there is a demand for this change. The logic being that if there is demand it is a good idea otherwise it is a bad idea. I'm not sure that is good logic in the first place but more importantly the questionaire will not reach the cavers that might benefit from the change thus distorting the results of the questionaire.

However all information is good and we might learn some interesting stuff from the questionaire. I just hope false conclusions are not drawn from the results.

For me the best reason for individual membership of the CSCC is to encourage more volunteers to step forward to help do all those things, normal behind the sceens, that are necessary to keep the sport going. It is my belief that if you give cavers direct membership of the organisation, if you give them a vote they will feel more involved and more willing to give up some of their time. Difficult to prove I know, but that is my belief.
Dave Cooke
BCA IT Working Party, BCA Web Services, National Cave Registry Co-ordinator, CSCC Webmaster

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