Nick Moulton remembers a close friend and former CCC Treasurer
Richard Vidler was a popular and active
member of Croydon Caving Club in the
1990s and 2000s. He was a long-serving Club
Richard started caving with ULSA, while studying
civil engineering at Leeds University. When he
moved to Croydon in his twenties, he carried on the
sport with Croydon Caving Club. He was a regular at
Godre Pentre, and at the club’s weekly pub meet, and
an enthusiastic participant in trips, expeditions,
social activities and club life.
Richard was warm, generous and good-humoured.
He was always keen to contribute to the club and put
in many hours on the Committee as Club Treasurer,
working alongside his wife Linda, who was President.
His engineering and IT skills brought the club
some of its early website designs, as well as video
projection, assorted ingenious inventions and a fair
bit of scaffolding. He was behind the club’s adoption
of the Leonardo ‘Vitruvian Caver’ design and the
Vidlers were regular hosts of the club’s post AGM
parties, offering pizza, beer, floorspace and a nextday
I had the good fortune to share a flat in Croydon
with Richard for a couple of years in the late 1990s.
His considerate and easygoing nature made him
an excellent flatmate, who quickly became a good
friend. The place soon evolved into a classic cavers’
lair, packed with caving gear, surveys, computers,
construction kits, sci-fi books and videos, and
various steampunk-ish projects.
We were later joined by Richard’s long-distance
American girlfriend – and in 2004, many members
of Croydon Caving Club attended Richard and Linda’s
wedding in Scotland.
I visited Richard and Linda shortly before the arrival
of their firstborn, Mark. Richard had recently been
sent out to buy baby gear. He’d over-achieved on the
mission, bringing back a buggy and a large remotecontrolled
Richard continued to go underground regularly
with the Wealden Cave and Mine Society, taking part
in regular digging sessions in Surrey. He was also
Beaver Scout Leader for 14th Reigate Beaver Scouts.
Richard was devoted to Linda and to his sons, Mark