It Was All a Con at Babysitters'

July 5th and 6th 1997

by Ian Todd

I knew it was all a con. It was obvious that Clark Friend wanted people to turn up at the weekend, judging by number of email messages flying about but when we got there we learned that Simon Amatt wouldn't be there, so there wasn't any transport for the winch, and Graham Christian was attending a ninetieth birthday party (not his own). John Lister was there but doing other things. All in all we were pretty thin on the ground.

Clark and Chris Grimmett were up and away on Saturday morning, before I even got out of my sleeping bag (as usual), and left word that they were going to Chas' dig first to help move a boulder, and would then spend the day at Babysitters'.

Dave Edwards, Brian Clipstone, Adrian Davies and myself eventually reached the dig, uncovered the shaft, and set to work bailing the shaft of the water that had collected during the recent wet weather.We were lucky that the weather was beautiful and sunny with a very gentle breeze, (so of course we all ended up sunburned).We removed 50 buckets of water during the afternoon, but Clark and Chris never did return from Chas' dig. Just as well really as I had chilled bottles of beer in the rucksac for all of us, and we were able to share out the bottles supplied for the missing pair.When we got back to the Club we met them there, and they claimed that they had been to babysitters' and thought we weren't going to turn up, so they spent the day with Chas! We think it was all a con as they had got too used to having a winch available.

On Sunday, the same crew went up the hill with the addition of Clark, Chris and Chas Jay. We spent another lovely day tiring ourselves out. Twenty five more buckets of water, followed by seventy five of rocks and sand.

Adrian found two small frogs at the bottom of the shaft, and relocated them to the water tanks near the track.

Probably the next real hit at this site will be the August Bank Holiday week, anybody welcome to give a hand!