THE WAY OUT - Edition 3, October 1997

Welcome to the third issue of the West Brecon Cave Rescue Team newsletter. It's all change again this month. The first two most striking differences are that this edition is obviously significantly smaller than usual and that Tony Baker has not edited it. The reason for the reduced content is not because we have nothing to tell you, but because we can't at present afford to print and distribute another eight page newsletter. More of that later. I am editing this edition simply because Tony is away on holiday. All being well, Edition 4 in January next year, (and those that follow) will be edited by Tony. This comes as a relief to me, as how he managed to get so much material into the last edition is a mystery to me.
Thanks for that Tony.
Gary Evans, Edition Three Editor

WBCRT Fundraising
Maintaining an effective rescue capability has always been a challenge to cavers, not least because of the need to raise money for equipment. The WBCRT has well organised stores and equipment, ready to be put into use at short notice, and further items are set aside for training purposes. We also have a Land Rover Ambulance. Keeping all of this up to date and in a safe and acceptable condition has been financed for many years largely through the efforts of team members. Fundraising events at SWCC, a popular stand at the Royal Welsh Show and other occasional events have kept a modest income flowing. Last year around £900 was raised manning the car park at Dan Yr Ogof at the August Bank Holiday - we owe Ashford Price a great deal of thanks for that. This year things have not been so easy. There have been no lucrative one-off events, and the Royal Welsh was closed to us. A new focus on fundraising is needed.

Recently we applied for a £5,000 grant from the Sports Council to pay for new ropes and rigging gear. Unfortunately, we were unable to accept what was offered to us because we did not have the existing funds to meet our share of the cost. Alternative grants are being sought which will require us to lay out less money, but in the mean time, we are running out fast. Keeping the Land Rover in first class order and preparing for the new First Aid course have cost us most of our reserve, but the expenditure was essential. We now have only a few hundred pounds available to us for equipment replacement and projects, so we need an injection of cash urgently.

Please drop a few pounds into one of the collecting boxes when you can, or send a donation to our Treasurer, Kevin Davies (The Coach House, Craig-y-Nos, Powys SA9 1GJ). Also look out for events, starting with the Fireworks Party at Penwyllt (bring a good firework, be well fed and drink a lot), which Jopo has agreed to organise. If anyone has any good ideas for fundraising, which they are prepared to put into action and follow through to a conclusion, please get in touch with me.
Pat Hall
WBCRT Fundraising Manager
2 The Poplars
Arlesey, Beds
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More on Fundraising
As Pat points out, the shortage of funds has affected our ability to undertake projects. This is why this newsletter is so short and also why other things we are trying to do have been delayed. It costs around £1 per person per year to issue 'The Way Out' and whilst we are keen to ensure that everyone who wants to continue to get a copy does so, it would really help us is if you or your club could make a contribution towards it. We have had only one donation so far from East Dorset Speleological Society and we are extremely grateful to them. Please help if you can, either with donations for the Newsletter, or more generally to help the WBCRT and Gwent Cave Rescue Teams.
Gary Evans Chairman, WBCRT and SWCRO

What's Happening?
I. Cave Rescue First Aid Course
This is our flagship project for 1997. We are on schedule and it's going well. The Trainers undertook the pilot course on 6/7 September and (I'm pleased to report) all got through with flying colours. They then went on to the 'train the trainer' weekend on 20/21 September which again went well. This now means, including Dr. Lisa Williams and myself, we have 8 trainers/assessors ready for action. The first 'open' course is taking place on 18/19 October and should be followed by one in early December and another in February. So, if you want to undertake this, contact either Bob Hall on 01422343121 or myself, but be quick because there is a lot of demand from a number of the Cave Rescue Teams as well as the WBCRT and GCRT.

II. Call Out List
Ali Garman has done an excellent job of writing the Database with help on questionnaire collection and data entry from Claire Hicks and Sue Mabbett. Ali reports that there are now over 120 people recorded in the Database. The next steps are to complete the reports section of the Database (it is written for Microsoft Access 4.0), to verify the data, which Verena Zimmer has kindly agreed to undertake and to complete the research into other associated contact numbers. We are hoping to be ready for 1st November.
A big thank you to all of you who have taken the time to fill in and return your questionnaires and a big please (once again) to all of you who still haven't got round to doing it.

lll. Members Handbook and Training Checklist
This is the project that has slipped somewhat in timing, mainly due to the sheer amount of other work and projects going on. So, apologies to those of you who are waiting for this, especially those who have asked me when it will be ready. Brian Bowell and I met last week to get the ball rolling again and we now have the overall framework complete. Because of the technical nature of the content, this publication requires an input from quite a number of people with specialised skills and knowledge, so it will take a little while longer to get all the information together and the handbook completed, published and distributed.
Watch this space.

lV. Training
At last we are pleased to announce the WBCRT Winter training Programme. Please come along, we welcome all members of the Team, whether you have been a member for years or have just got involved recently. There are 3 elements as follows:
a - Major Practice Events
i - November 29th- 'War Game'. This will be a simulated major rescue taking place at SWCC headquarters in Penwyllt Complex, testing, stressful, a good learning opportunity and fun.
ii - January 17th - Technical Training Day. A day to be spent on the technical aspects of Rescue with a number of sessions running in parallel. Again at SWCC headquarters
iii - April 1998- Mines Rescue in Mid Wales. Date and venue to be announced. An important practice, as we are responsible for Rescue cover for thousands of mines in South and Mid Wales.
b - Wednesday Evenings
The Wednesday evening practices are restarting on 12th November and the timetable of events will advertised on posters at all the cavers venues and through the caving clubs. There will be a session running every week from the 12th through into 1998 with just a couple of weeks off for Christmas.
c - Saturday Evenings
We are going to start Saturday evening training practices in a similar vein to the Wednesday ones. This will give people who are only down for the weekend a chance to attend. The first one will be on Saturday 22nd November and they will be fortnightly. We are going to run 3 this year to see how they go. Please come along if you can. We intend to run these at SWCC initially, but would be happy to use varying venues if people want us to. Like the Wednesdays, the sessions will be for only 2 hours and will not involve going underground.

To all of you who contributed articles for this edition of the Way Out, we apologise for not being able to print them at this time. We hope to print them in Edition 4. Keep the articles coming folks; fascinating reading.

As always, contributions for 'The Way Out' to:
Tony Baker
26 Constable Way
College Green
Tel 01276609162

Anything else to any WBCRT Committee member or me:
Gary Evans
Poplar Court
Station Road