Film ID: YFA 4340 Video of YFA_4340 Eli Simpson Collection ELI SIMPSON COLLECTION REEL 1 1953 Visitor TabsDescription In the summer of 1953, Eli Simpson set out to make a film for the British Speleological Association called The Birth of a Yorkshire River or The Waters of Mawn. The film collection is comprised of rushes he shot at locations such as Ingleborough Cave, Malham Cove, and Hull Pot, all located in the Yorkshire Dales, and many of the films include both interior and exterior footage of the caves. The following film was shot on 10th May, 1953 at Clapham Cove Entrance and includes footage of the Fox Holes. The film opens with a couple walking over the stones. They make their way to a man who is measuring an opening in the rock formation. They go onto examine the ground and walk over rock mounds. A woman is sitting near a rock pool. A woman walks on a pathway near an old house and a large stone fence. A couple walk over stones. Possibly at Hull Pot, there are cavers who climb down a rope ladder. One man climbs down while two others hold the ladder and safety rope at the top of the pothole. Three cavers sit on a rock, and the countryside can be seen in the background. This is followed by more attempts to climb up and down the rope ladder. There are shots of the surrounding Lakeland and countryside, possibly near Ingleborough Cave. There are cows grazing in the field, and a man moving some rocks around. There are extensive scenes of the vast landscape. A family poses by Malham Cove entrance. People are sitting on the bridge in Malham village, and there is more footage taken at the crossroads in the centre of the village. The film ends with more footage of the surrounding countryside and a waterfall. Context Come to the landscape of glaciokarst, of Harry Potter and Tolkien’s Helm's Deep, of grykes and clints, of Green Spleenwort, the magical Janet’s Foss and John Piper. It’s 10th May 1953, and influential and controversial British speleologist recorder Eli Simpson embarks upon an ambitious, but uncompleted, project to make a film, Birth of a Yorkshire River. This clip shows our intrepid couple searching for the source of Malham Beck, exploring openings at Fox Holes and Ingleborough Cave, and descending a rope ladder at Hull Pot, with views over the spectacular landscape around Malham in the Yorkshire Dales. This is one of many reels of rushes that were made under the direction of Eli Simpson, founding member and Recorder of the British Speleological Association. The idea was to make a film titled “Birth of a Yorkshire River” or “The Waters of Mawn” (a puzzling title). Simpson, in control of a fracturing British Speleological Association, got the help of his Settle neighbour Eddy Perry as technician and camera operator, and BSA member John Tobin, a photographer from Keighley, also behind the camera. The filming, poorly resourced over two years, eventually petered out. The whole enterprise has been meticulously recorded in a film made by fellow caveman filmmaker Sid Perou, who has also made a film about Simpson.