With Matt Tuck.

Started the session scratching away some sediment from the passage floor before deciding to see what effect ‘capping’ would have on the slab of rock in the roof. The slab measured about 1 metre in length, 700mm wide and ranged between 150mm to 250mm thickness, only 1 hole was required to bring it down but several more were needed to reduce it to manageable sized lumps. On examination of the fractured rock it is clear to see why the drilling is variable, there are limestone and occasionally sandstone clasts, surrounded in an iron rich matrix that has changeable density, and there are vugs containing calcite crystallisation, the slab also had a flowstone up to c.70mm thickness on one side. The outcome was 13 skip loads of rock and 6 bags of mostly gravel being hauled out to the surface, the rock was put to one side for walling and the bags were emptied on the spoil heap. There is more space at the end for digging now, so it was deemed a successful morning.

The refreshments at the Hunter’s had been earned.