MCG veterans group
A message from veteran Tony Knibbs
For a variety of reasons I have been giving thought to the early history of the MCG: articles, identification of people in old photos, etc. An important and somewhat disappointing thread runs through any consideration of our history - very few old members remain in touch with each other. The 'grim reaper' is responsible for some of this, but not all!
Several members have moved overseas, some have simply moved within UK leaving no forwarding address. I suppose it has to be accepted that quite a few old members have simply moved on (grown up?) and want nothing more to do with the Group. I would like to do something to stem the ebbing tide.
The informal MCG 'veterans' group aims at promoting contact between old and ex members. A simple affinity group should suffice; I don't see a greying, wrinkled mirror image of the MCG being either desirable or viable. However, I think that occasional meetings (reunions) could be useful, and even some form of simple newsletter might be desirable. Joan Goddard has been putting in many hours of work recently to put dozens of old photos into the Group library archive. Richard Woollacott has submitted over 100, as has Tony Crawford.
Initially this 'veteran' grouping will consist of those members who joined the Group between 1954 and the end of 1964 - the first, formative ten years. At first I suggested fifteen years, but this period produced an unwieldy number of people to deal with initially. The first decade chimes with decadence!
During this ten-year period the Group set out its stall in the caving marketplace; it has not significantly changed its size shape or character since then. This encompasses members up to number 121 as shown in the retrospective list of members given in the MCG Journal for 1984.
It would be nice if members' spouses and partners could also participate. Let me state clearly that this is not intended to conflict with the Mendip Caving Group proper. The only request we might perhaps make to the Group could take the form of an application to use the Nordrach Cottage facilities, it being understood that such a request would not interfere with Group scheduled activities. I think that the affinity sub-group should be mindful of the needs of the Group proper inasmuch as it may be able to further the aims of MCG in some way.
The following list of names represents the 'veteran' grouping. Any alteration to the period covered can be made at any time in the future. It might be difficult or impossible to contact some of these, but let's look on the bright side.
I have no contact details for those names shown in italics. If you can help in tracking anybody down please let me have the appropriate details; I'm happy to act as a clearing house while the idea is thought about. In compiling the following list I have omitted deceased members.
I remind you that the names in italics are people for whom I have no contact details, and would be delighted to have any help available. Copies of this open letter have already sent to people for whom I have an address. A copy has also been sent to the MCG Hon. Secretary. Replies so far have been very positive. All observations will be most welcome.
Any replies will be forwarded to Tony
Mendip Caving Group. UK Charity Number 270088. The object of the Group is, for the benefit of the public, the furtherance of all aspects of the exploration, scientific study and conservation of caves and related features. Membership shall be open to anyone over the age of 18 years with an interest in the objects of the Group.