Jump to content

Its A Shame To Read...


Followers 3

Recommended Posts

serious health and safety issues

Hmm...

 

So now that the cache is removed, have these serious health and safety issues disappeared? If so, how?

 

I'm strangely drawn to visiting this cave now, and am indebted to wjrs5 for pointing out the location. I'll take my own responsibility for the mysterious dangers I'll encounter...

 

I caught an 11.5 pound sewin in the river a few miles below the cache area a couple of years ago (wading the river Towy in total darkness - is that a health and safety risk as well?): so I do know a bit about this region!

 

HH

Edited by Happy Humphrey
Link to comment

Not sure if it is relevant in this case but I do know that under recent conservation legislation those responsible for certain classes of NNR can find themselves legally responsible it it can be construed that they gave permission for members of the public to enter specified areas where protected species are present. This has led to a situation in Norfolk where we may place caches in Area A but not Area B within an NNR.

 

So the question is, are protected species present around Twm Sion Cati's Cave and what level of statutary conservation is applied to the area? You may find that you are victims of the a litigious society where the RSPB are just trying to minimise there exposure to being sued in case a careless cacher stomps on a Red List species. :laughing:

Link to comment

So the question is, are protected species present around Twm Sion Cati's Cave and what level of statutary conservation is applied to the area?

If that's the case, then the RSPB would surely have mentioned this. Instead, they make it clear that it's purely a Health and Safety issue - IMO that's a feeble excuse, and I suspect that they simply want to keep members of the public from potentially interfering with what they see as their own land. And - let's face it - their own hobby.

 

Note that there's a public footpath close to the cave, and that the cave is marked on the OS map. So there will be plenty of visitors, cache or no cache!

 

HH

Link to comment

Reading the log and seeing that as far as the staff are aware there was no permission granted for the cache then that alone is reason enough for removing it, health and safety rules apart. As has been mentioned those haven't gone away. Maybe the next step will be the issue of Hi-vis vests when walking in country parks so the wildlife is aware of your presence and making it easier to find you if you get lost!

But as the RSPB have now got a username how long before they start finding or placing their own caches, come on, join the fun. Or even better replace the cache there with one you can supervise and feel happy about- pretty please.

 

BareClawz

Link to comment

A story about an unrelated cache, but interesting to compare and contrast the approach taken by a different landowner....

 

There are a number of caches within the MoD training area in Northumberland . For those that don't know the area, north of the River Coquet is 'dry training' with blank ammo, pyrotechnics, etc. South of the Coquet is live firing with real bullets, bombs and other explosives. There are notices all over warning people not to touch or pick up anything anywhere within the training area, as it is potentially dangerous (even in the dry training area), plus warning signs about not leaving the road on the south side of the river due to the risk of unexploded live ordnance.

 

There is one cache which I have done which was sited just off the road on the south (live firing) side. When I did this I was surprised that permission had been granted

 

Just last weekend I was talking to a friend of mine who works for MoD Estates, and looks after access to MoD Estates land. We got onto the subject of geocaching, and he said that he regularly looks at GC.com to see if anything appeared within the training area. He specifically mentioned the cache that had been placed within the live firing area.

 

Knowing how careful the MoD are about safety and given that someone had placed a cache on their land (1) without permission, (2) in an area where the health & safety hazard is death by military ordnance, they could have been justified in going ballistic about this one (pun entirely intentional - I couldn't resist)

 

I was amazed at how amenable they'd been about this cache. They'd gone out, retrieved it, rehidden it nearby within the safer (non-live firing) part of the training area, and simply sent a note to the cache owner to let them know where it was now hidden.

Edited by Dave from Glanton
Link to comment

Whilst it is a shame the cache has been removed, the land owner had every right to. I'm a bit surprised by some comments questioning their actions like:

 

is it just someone who is just anally retentive and using the only power they have...lets hope something can be resolved

 

I really don't think these kind of comments are fair and are unhelpful. I do of course hope the cache can be restored but don't think we've been done any favours by this episode. There should have been negations with the RSPB before the cache was placed, not just because thats what your supposed to do, but also because I suspect you'd have a very unhappy RSPB if the cache placement effected their work in protecting birds.

 

Placing caches is a privilege, not a right.

Link to comment

 

But as the RSPB have now got a username how long before they start finding or placing their own caches, come on, join the fun. Or even better replace the cache there with one you can supervise and feel happy about- pretty please.

 

 

and a premium member as well :D

Link to comment

I must say that both the reason given, and the way the reason was logged publicly on GC.com give me the impression that this was done by someone with a bee in there bonnet about the cache being placed. Not that I am condoning the placing of caches without permission, I am just observing that this might well be someone who works for the RSPB who was upset and not the RSPB as an organisation, and permission may still be possible.

Link to comment

Seems the hot weather is making people "Fly off the handle" at the slightest comment on the Forum.

 

adambro seems to have a sensible comment.

 

I really don't think these kind of comments are fair and are unhelpful. I do of course hope the cache can be restored but don't think we've been done any favours by this episode. There should have been negations with the RSPB before the cache was placed, not just because thats what your supposed to do, but also because I suspect you'd have a very unhappy RSPB if the cache placement effected their work in protecting birds.

 

Placing caches is a privilege, not a right.

 

The fact is, the cache was placed on land -owned by someone- without permission. Why get upset, when they say it's not allowed there?

 

And, as they are now signed up, you can bet your bottom doller, they are checking their other sites for caches without permission.

 

Well said adambro, I'm with you.

 

G

Link to comment

Seems the hot weather is making people "Fly off the handle" at the slightest comment on the Forum.

 

adambro seems to have a sensible comment.

 

I really don't think these kind of comments are fair and are unhelpful. I do of course hope the cache can be restored but don't think we've been done any favours by this episode. There should have been negations with the RSPB before the cache was placed, not just because thats what your supposed to do, but also because I suspect you'd have a very unhappy RSPB if the cache placement effected their work in protecting birds.

 

Placing caches is a privilege, not a right.

 

The fact is, the cache was placed on land -owned by someone- without permission. Why get upset, when they say it's not allowed there?

 

And, as they are now signed up, you can bet your bottom doller, they are checking their other sites for caches without permission.

 

Well said adambro, I'm with you.

 

G

It's not the landowner that is concerned about the cache, it's the RSPB. And they are not upset about the lack of permission - it's a "health and safety issue" that caused them to retrieve the cache.

 

Also, there's no guarantee (from what we can see here) that permission was not granted - sometimes someone gives permission but doesn't tell all interested parties, and sometimes the details are lost with the passage of time and change of personnel. I know of at least one of my caches that was placed with permission, but after only a year or so I'm quite sure that none of the staff who work nearby will have any idea that there's a cache there. The cache in question is much older than this.

 

All we know is that the cache was archived due to the RSPB's health and safety issues, which I feel are rather misguided.

 

As proposed, it would be nice if the staff at the RSPB could suggest an alternative site for the cache: and I would welcome their input on why this area is unsafe for geocachers but fine for other members of the public.

 

Who flew off the handle, by the way? :D

 

HH

Link to comment

It's not the landowner that is concerned about the cache, it's the RSPB. And they are not upset about the lack of permission - it's a "health and safety issue" that caused them to retrieve the cache.

 

Also, there's no guarantee (from what we can see here) that permission was not granted - sometimes someone gives permission but doesn't tell all interested parties, and sometimes the details are lost with the passage of time and change of personnel. I know of at least one of my caches that was placed with permission, but after only a year or so I'm quite sure that none of the staff who work nearby will have any idea that there's a cache there. The cache in question is much older than this.

 

I thought the RSPB owned the land, I can't tell the extent of their reserve there from the map. I also think that their reasons for removing the cache are irelevant, if the cache was placed on land owned by them without permission, why do they have to give a reason for removing it.

 

I accept that the owner of the cache could have sought permission from the landowner but this has not been communicated fully within the organisation. It doesn't seem like this is the case though from reading the note by 'RSPB'. Even if it was however, it doesn't stop them revoking that permission if they have concerns as they mention in this case.

 

Reading some of the logs, it doesn't sound to me that they're just using health and safety concerns as an excuse to remove it. It does sound like the terrain might be a bit difficult. Log by dysdera:

 

got to the seat and looked at my PDA and thought surely it cant be up that cliff face can it. But the GPS doesnt tell fibs and it was.

Just a quick word of warning though. This is a lovely cache and well worth the travel for anyone, but not exactly child friendly due to hard climbs, steep cliffs and fast water.

Link to comment

I'm not casting aspersions here, just thinking out loud...

 

Before we start flaming the Royal Society For The Protection Of Birds, are we sure that the "RSPB" user is actually representative of that organisation? We've seen our share of sock puppets, trolls and flame-bait in the forums - is it possible that the user who has reported this cache to TPTB is in fact some ne'er-do-well masquerading as a the RSPB in the hope of spoiling come cachers' fun?

 

Just a thought.

Link to comment

Reading some of the logs, it doesn't sound to me that they're just using health and safety concerns as an excuse to remove it. It does sound like the terrain might be a bit difficult. Log by dysdera:

The terrain is graded 3.5 stars, and there are several warnings in the cache description about the difficult ground. I don't think that this is a valid reason for the removal of the cache - otherwise we'd have little use for the terrain rating, as all caches would have to be on safe, level ground.

 

There's a fast-flowing, rocky river right at the side of the footpath leading to the cache area, and anglers will expect to wade into the middle of it on the darkest of nights, alone and without lights - quite a lot more dangerous than a bit of steep ground, and probably within the RSPB area too.

 

If the RSPB revoke their permission, that's perfectly acceptable: but surely we deserve a valid reason. If there was no permission granted - of course, that's a different matter, but bear in mind that "RSPB" may have no idea about the original cache placement.

 

HH

Link to comment

 

and a premium member as well :)

 

This makes sense if they really represent the RSPB. I know a few organisations who periodically electronically download all cache locations near their land (which a registered account makes easier) and then check to see if there are any caches actually on their land. The one I'm thinking of thankfully is very supportive of Geocaching and usually contact the cacher to retrospectively give them permission for the cache or ask them to move it to a safer location if the cache is dangerous or in danger of being moved.

 

I've found getting permission can sometimes be a blessing in disguise. I recently set up a cache on land managed by Kent Wildlife Trust (You're Not Fowling Me). After it was explained what Geocaching was, I took the site warden around all the stages of the multi-cache showing where the clue laminates would be placed and then showed the final cache location. He informed me that one of the locations was about to be dismantled so if I handn't done this, the cache would be obsolete within a week or so of being placed.

 

Not only that, I'd produced a laminate explaining Geocaching and what it involved on this site so that they could explain what Geocaching was about if anyone was curious and had found one of the game pieces. They liked this a lot and it's now on the wall of the visitor's centre, so maybe as well as providing good will with the people who manage the reserve, we'll have some new cachers as a resut.

Link to comment

As someone who knows the area, the cave and this RSPB reserve well I know that they are actively discouraging EVERYONE from visiting Twm Sion Cati's cave. Friends of my are part of a walking group who visited it last month and they were told in no uncertain terms by the RSPB to stay away. My belief (and if I'm honest I'm not compeltely sure on this point so please correct me if I'm wrong) is that there is a public footpath to the cave (albeit a bit of a steep rocky climb through the woods) and therefore although the RSPB can discorage visitors, they can not stop them.

 

However I do have sympathy with the RSPB in this case - this particular reserve has historically had many rare breeds and has done a incredible amout of good work in reintroducing red kites to the area. It's not so long since woods like these being patrolled by the military to keep the nests safe from egg collectors. Understandably then the RSPB should be a bit put out finding a cache in the area after making so much effort to protect the area for so long.

 

On the other hand, I'm very proud to be Welsh and this cave played an important part in Welsh History as it was a base for Twm Sion Cati - our equivelent to Robin Hood. I loved being taken there as a child and hearing the stories of the outlaw from Tregaron!!!! I'd hate to see this cave closed off to the public competely and others not getting a chance to visit like I did.

 

I don't give any credit to the health and safety arguement - if I could climb this easily as a child of five I'm sure a few geocachers can manage it! I expect this is part of a bigger scenario of which we do not have the full facts. I'm sure the RSPB's reasons for discoraging visits to the cave are valid but I for one would be interested to hear them.

Link to comment

Several things have sprung to mind while following this thread today...

 

Firstly, RSPB (whoever he/she maybe) might well be reading this thread, so we should indeed be very careful what we say; that's to say we should think before we hit "Add Reply".

 

Secondly, reading the logs for the cache from RSPB and the previous post, it seems to me that Satellite Kid posted their adventure and RSPB felt that this was the last straw and they needed to archive it to prevent a law suite. Try reading the post by Satellite Kid from a non-cachers, non-walkers perspective. Phrases like, "Grass and moss were covering a deep hole between too sharp rocks and I fell right in" and "Thought I'd broken my leg at first with the pain" DO make it sound like a death trap. I'm not criticising Satellite Kid here, we've wrote logs similar to this, but maybe we all need to be a little more cautious about what we write when we post logs and bear in mind the land owners who might be reading.

 

Finally, Dave from Wombles has already said that he will be enquiring on behalf of GAGB, so I personally think this thread should either be closed or allowed to die quietly so as not to damage his negociations. I don't have a problem with discussion, but this could be a delicate matter.

 

Just my thoughts...

 

Bambi.

Link to comment

Now that I have the full facts from Groundspeak I can confirm that "RSPB" is in fact an officer of that organisation and in a position to speak for them. They have been upgraded to Premium Membership by Groundspeak so they can monitor all caches that may be on their reserves. I can also confirm that the cache was placed without their knowledge or permission.

 

I would like to thank The Wombles for contacting them and wish them luck in their discussions. I think this emphasises the reasosn why we sometimes make a nuisance of ourselves when reviewing caches in sensitive locations.

 

I think the time has come to close this thread.

Link to comment
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
Followers 3
×
×
  • Create New...