Nelsons Cavern


This graphic in the Times today shows what is described as a ‘monstrous hole in the ground that is Britain’s biggest pothole’. Starting 65 ft below ground, the cave descends downwards for 464 ft. It was discovered by three potholers who dug though a passageway that had been blocked by a rockfall. They had been convinced that there were hidden wonders still to be discovered under the Peak District. The graphic shows something even more wondrous – an inaccessible cave in the shape of Nelsons Column. Nelsons Cavern, if you will.

What other subterranean monuments might speculate lurk below the crust of England? Perhaps Wookey Hole, dark and wet below the Malvern hills connects into a cavernous void in the form of Blenheim Palace, or the Northern Line? Perhaps over millions of years, as sea-levels rise, pockets of cave-void will be formed around buildings as silt settles upon them. Potholers of the future might find themselves negotiating descents through fossilised urbanisation, climbing through the ossified geology of buried cities.


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