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More caves to be explored at Wookey Hole

Owners of Wookey Hole plan to open up unseen caverns beneath the Mendips Credit: Wookey Hole Caves

The owners of Wookey Hole plan to open up unseen caverns beneath the Mendips as part of a £3 Million explansion.

Specialist consulting engineers have carried out a full geotechnical survey of rocks and plans are being submitted to bore an access tunnel through the rocks so that visitors can see a spectacular underground lake and cave formations only previously seen by cave divers.

The owners of Wookey Hole plan to open up unseen caverns beneath the Mendips as part of a £3 Million explansion Credit: Wookey Hole Caves

Geotechnical checks have been made and the new tunnel will take around a month of work and will be ready in time for the summer holidays.

The local authority have passed our plans for this exciting new development and we start work literally tunnelling into the unknown.

The new tunnel will be similar to the one created in 1973 which enabled people to see extra caverns and which is now an established part of our tour.

The tunnel created then is also used to store Wookey Hole Cave Aged Cheddar. The new access tunnel will be 70 metres long and will enable people to go into the 20th Chamber, which the cave divers have always called King Arthur’s Beard because of the shape of a rock formation in it.

The new chamber will give people an insight into a world only glimpsed by a few people that are brave enough to swim underwater with oxygen tanks to access it at the moment.

– Daniel Medley, Director, Wookey Hole Caves

Millions to be invested in Mendip leisure centres

Almost £2.8m will be invested in leisure facilities in the Mendips over the next 4 years.

The district council has approved 50-year leases to Sports Management Company Fusion Lifestyle for five centres beginning in June 2015. The not-for-profit organisation bid for the contracts with plan involving four years worth of improvements.

The legal agreement is expected to be signed before Christmas, and the programme of investment due to be completed by 1 April 2018.

The following centres are set to benefit:

  • Frome Leisure Centre - £2million
  • Wells Leisure Centre - £550,0000
  • Strode Swimming Pool and Fitness Centre - £100,000
  • Tor Sports and Leisure Centre - £75,000
  • Shepton Mallet Lido - £75,000

To appoint a partner to operate the district’s leisure facilities was a bold move by the council and one that has secured the future of leisure across the district for many years to come. If we had not taken this approach, there would have been a question mark over how long the council could have continued to fund leisure services in Mendip.

– Cllr John Parham, Mendip District Council