Potholing in England

Challenge yourself to go potholing and explore some fascinating caves in England

Potholing in England

Potholing is the activity of going into underground caves, caverns and tunnels to explore them. Luckily the UK has a range of possibilities for potholing, from the beginner to the professional. There are many types of caves, from natural limestone to mines and so much more.

When you go potholing, there are some necessities that you will need, like a helmet with a primary light source so your head is protected and your hands are free. When it comes to footwear, preferable boots in drier caves and rubber boots in wet caves, it is best to wear fleece as a base layer, thermal underwear, jacket, and over trousers.

Limestone is generally the country-rock for caving and mining, but it doesn’t stop there. In England, there are a lot of different locations to go potholing. Make sure to add some adventure to your Private Tour of England.

Add some underground adventure to your Private Tour of England

Here you can find the top five places to go potholing in England;

1. The Yorkshire Dales offer many caves to explore, but Alum Pot is one of the most popular ones. It's an 80m open shaft, and to reach it, you will find yourself on a journey through the Long Churns Cave and down the Dolly Tubs drop. When you arrive in the sunlit cavern, you have the opportunity to abseil and cross the centre to ‘The Bridge’.

2. Renowned as one of the UK’s longest caves, Gaping Gill's main chamber is 13 miles long, with access down a 322 ft deep hole with fell beck flowing over into the cave. Interestingly, its first descent was made in 1865 by Edouard Martel, who communicated to the surface team via telephone. If you want to discover this place, you will make the same descent as Mr Martel using a winch.

3. Beneath the Royal Forest of Dean, you can find the Clearwell Caves in Gloucestershire. This is a natural cave system mined for over 4.000 years, including a sound chamber, skeleton pools, and bat churn. You can go for a gentle discovery of the system or discover some of the passageways on a guided tour. Suppose you want to get an adrenaline rush. In that case, you can choose the deep level caving experience that allows you to walk, crawl, and descend through tunnels, following natural and artificial routes that miners would have had to follow.

4. It turns out that one of the most original caving experiences in the country takes place in Wild Wookey, Somerset. This place has been designed and created by experienced and licensed cavers and offers an insight into technical European-style adventure caving. You can expect abseils, crossing deep water, incredible views and witnessing geological and archaeological features.

5. Famous for its stunning Blue John stone, Treak Cliff Cavern in Castleton was used as a working mine 300 years ago. Now it’s an absolute must-see visitor attraction in the Hope Valley area of Derbyshire. Near to Chatsworth House.

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