Gritstone gods Johnny Dawes and John Allen were there, and so were the BMC guidebook team and anybody who had anything to do with the new BMC Froggatt to Black Rocks guidebook. The place was the Green Room on Devonshire Street, the trendy area of downtown Sheffield buzzing with post-exam students and townies on a mid-week night out. The curry was good, and so was the beer and the company.
The BMC Froggatt to Black Rocks guidebook joins the award winning Stanage and The Roaches in the BMC series that covers Peak District climbing. Next up is Over The Moors, then Peak Limestone. Collectively a great series of definitive guidebooks that British climbers should be very proud of. I think that globally the UK stands proud, along with several excellent foreign guidebooks (check out Scot Jerry Handren's Red Rocks guidebook) in the world of guidebook design, content and production.
The BMC Froggatt to Black Rocks contains many well known crags and some obscurities, and as ever Niall Grimes has written an illuminating historical essay that I fell asleep reading last night, I look forward to finishing it later today. Top marks BMC and the editors of BMC Froggatt to Black Rocks Steve 'Offwidth' Clark and Lynn Robinson.
On Wednesday 9th June, a misty and rainy night, around 25 climbers met at The Winking Man Pub near the Roaches. On the agenda was the somewhat controversial topic of Fixed Belays at Millstone the subject of which was brought up by Martin Kocsis, BMC Volunteers' Officer in his BMC Climber magazine column and on various forum threads at UKClimbing.com. Martin was not at the meeting.
Do we need bolted belays at Millstone? The consensus at the meeting was no. But concern was raised that Martin Kocsis shouldn't be writing personal opinion columns under the BMC logo. Henry Folkard was concerned about Martin's latest opinion piece in Climber magazine where some conservation bodies are mentioned in a disparaging tone. Henry has to deal with these conservation bodies on many access issues in the Peak and such comments could make his job difficult. Many agreed that Martin's articles are a good read and thought-provoking, but the opinion was that really no-one from the BMC should be writing hot topic polemics in a BMC column. Take away the BMC logo and that would be fine.
Henry gave a rundown in his usual comprehensive and witty style on all other access issues and these will be summarised by the BMC Peak Area Meeting. There was nothing to report on the Bolt Policy item that was on the agenda.
One subject that was raised and provoked some discussion was an application by The Climbers' Club to borrow £200,000 from the BMC to help the CC purchase a new club hut in Grange, Borrowdale. This application will be going in front of the BMC National Council for consideration.
The chips and butties were great. Thank you.
The next Peak Area Meeting is in September, location and date to be announced. Keep your eye on the BMC Community Website linked below.