Shropshire Caving & Mining Club

SCMC Shropshire Caving & Mining Club

Shropshire Caving & Mining Club

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All Club meetings are temporarily suspended and now being held via Zoom. The Secretary will try to keep members up-to-date via email.

We are normally an active group of people interested in the exploration and study of mines and caves in Britain, Europe and ... well anywhere actually! Sadly our activities have been severely reduced this year, so our news items are getting a little old ... hopfully you'll still find them interesting.

For contact details, membership form and to find out more visit our About Us page


Online Club meetings

Online Club Meetings

We have been holding monthly meetings online since the first Lockdown. Plus, extra talks have been held in the middle of the month. You can join meetings via your browser so you don’t need to install any Zoom software. All you need is a webcam and microphone - most modern laptops have them.

Meeting details are usually sent out the day before. So why not join us for the next one? Let the secretary know if you are not getting the meeting details.

NAMHO 2021 Conference - 2nd to 5th July 2021

The Coronavirus crisis continues, but there are signs of optimism, and hopefully many of us may be vaccinated against the disease by the time NAMHO 2021 takes place.

The Shropshire Caving and Mining Club still intends to hold a Conference in South Shropshire over the weekend of 2nd to 5th July 2021, and some progress has been made in its preparation. We are planning on having a range of trips, plus lectures - most probably with an online element to allow as many people as possible to participate in the lectures including overseas delegates who may not be able or willing to travel.

The Theme

As it is the 60th Anniversary of the founding of the Club the proposed theme for the conference is "60 Years of Mining History Projects". The aim being to look at projects in the mining community that have developed with the growth of industrial archaeology and mine exploration during this period, along with the hopes of what the future might bring. Other clubs and societies will be encouraged to bring along displays on their local projects as well as having the usual mix of trade stands, local interest and rescue groups at the conference.

Spiral Classifier and jigs at Snailbeach mine prior to restoration

The Spiral Classifier and jigs at Snailbeach mine prior to restoration. (Alan Robinson)

Main tramming level at Huglith Barytes mine

Main tramming level and ore chute at Huglith Barytes mine. (Alan Robinson)

The Proposed Programme

Presently, it is still intended to carry out underground and surface field events, as well as a full talks programme, and they will obviously be conducted under whatever Covid-19 guidelines may be in place at the time. However we are having to look at a range of venue options, so are unable to provide clearer details on that at present. It seems likely that individual delegates will have to sort out their own accommodation and catering arrangements, as these are most likely to be disrupted by Covid restrictions in terms of mass gatherings. Some provision for informal camping may be possible, but cannot be guaranteed at this stage.

Shropshire Mines Trust members at Tankerville mine

Shropshire Mines Trust members looking at ongoing works at Tankerville mine. (Alan Robinson)

Rob Vernon will be co-ordinating the lecture programme, anyone interested in making a presentation can contact him via the conference email address namho.2021 followed by @ the

It is understandable that given the current situation no one wants to make a decision so far ahead. However the rapid growth in video meetings and conferencing since lockdown provides us with an additional opportunity for this conference. We believe that we should have sufficient onsite facilities to allow us to both provide a virtual programme of lectures, as well as a real time live event (where numbers indoors may still be controlled). Further it will also be possible for speakers to provide an online presentation if they are not able to attend in person. This obviously provides international speakers with an opportunity too.

Underground visits will be concentrated in Shropshire and the Welsh Borderlands, but with the possibility of a few visits further afield either side of the main conference. These will vary from dry, walk-in to multi pitch SRT. For those wanting to stay above ground, in addition to the lectures, there will be guided surface visits e.g. Ironbridge Gorge, and route guides for self-led walks around the West Shropshire mine sites.


Liesegang rings, Clive copper mine

Liesegang rings & banding within the sandstone of Clive copper mine. (Alan Robinson)

One aspect of planning the event is to know the approximate number of people who might attend so that equipment and human resources can be allocated to the different functions. It would help us immensely to have an estimate of how many might attend the Conference. If you intend to come to the NAMHO Conference in 2021 could you please contact the Conference organisers to register your interest. This will also allow us to e-mail you updates on trips, lectures and the overall programme as it becomes available.

To register your intent to attend the NAMHO Conference next year let us know by emailing namho.2021 followed by @ the

If you are shielding or have any concerns on the safety of the event then the virtual option will be available, but we would still like to hear from you.

Rob Vernon & Alan Robinson

Exploring underground

Exploring underground for over 50 years

Shropshire Caving & Mining Club

a flying batImportant Note

  • Underground exploration can be potentially dangerous if you do not have the right equipment and skills. This is why you should consider joining a well established Club, who can train you and lend you equipment for your first few trips.
  • Have a look at our Links page to find links to other underground exploration groups, both in Britain and around the world.


It's bats !Warning These pages are under continuous development, so beware of false links, and blind headings .... !!

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© Shropshire Caving & Mining Club. Last updated: 13-Jan-2021