James Thorne reflects on 2021

A little over a year ago, I sat down to write the editorial for Pelobates 97 in a time of great uncertainty. Brexit was starting to bite and the COVID-19 pandemic was in full swing. Despite both still affecting our lives, especially COVID, I feel that we are in a better place than we were, despite the recent Omicron wave.

2021 started much as 2020 had ended, with a lockdown. The Zoom quizzes continued but as things opened up, appetite for the quizzes waned and they were disbanded. I heard rumours of trips underground and wished I could join them. The 2021 AGM and committee meetings were all online via Zoom. It worked well for most but it was a shame that we could not include all of our committee as some could not access Zoom.

At the beginning of November, the SWCC fireworks party was postponed as the dangers of our sport were brought into the public eye; the longest ever cave rescue in the UK took place in Ogof Fynnon Ddu. The cave rescue did an amazing job to get the casualty to the surface and safely to hospital while fending off what seemed to be a media scrum desperate for news other than COVID. See The Bonfire Weekend from Hell on page 6 for more on that.

The club has managed to hold a few of its regular activities recently and we have had guest clubs staying in the cottage again. We held an in-person AGM and there are plans afoot for more trips courtesy of our shiny new Caving Secretary, Carl.

I hope you enjoy this edition of Pelobates as much as I have enjoyed putting it together. We have contributions from Eric, Chris, Adrian, Pete and Siriol.

If you would like to have your work published in such an illustrious magazine, you can send your contributions throughout the year to editor at croydoncavingclub.org.uk.

February 2022

James Thorne