/ Memorial plaques glued to the crag
Shiny new plaque (memorial to the Millsoms) has been glued to the rock beneath Millsom's Minion. I know the route bears his name, but is this appropriate? For all routes bearing a climber's name, or for first ascencionists? Bill (the recently retired warden) used to plant trees with memorial plaques in the Plantation below the edge, which seemed acceptable. I'm probably nit-picking, but plaques on the crag/routes seem a little out of place
The person might have been important to the local climbing community but climbers don't own the crags. Many use the outdoors and non climbers might take exception to climber memorials. Personally I don't mind as long as it's discreet. It can be too easy to view the countryside just as a climber.
Match off it to create a sit-start?
Two things. What have they done to deserve such commemoration? Honest question rather than a loaded one. And why does it need to be on the rock rather than elsewhere such as, say, by a tree in the plantation below? Oh, and a third question: who put it there?
I want a huge plaque on Stanage when I go, right next to a huge pile of my ashes and a wreath or 2 of faded flowers, ideally wrapped in non biodegradeable turtlekill cellofilm.
Inscribed with "In loving memory of dear DerwentDiluted, he loved this place so we thought we'd pollute it"
I think that a little niche chiselled in the rock, so the persons ashes in their urn could be placed there as well. Or even a ring to place flowers.
Might be a business opportunity for someone.
I think that the climbs that they pioneered are their memorial - nothing else needed.
What about sponsoring individual belay bolts with names inscribed on them?
Yeah, putting your name in the guide book next to a stanage 3 star E1 is as close to immortality as i can imagine. Plaque seems a little pointless really. But hey, it's tough to criticise what is almost certainly the actions of a grieving family.
> it's tough to criticise what is almost certainly the actions of a grieving family.
Sorry I don't agree. It is a form of littering and has no place other than in a dedicated garden of remembrance.
Yes, death of a loved one is a horrible experience, but it's a natural event that we will all go through one day. Pretty well everybody will experience grief at some time, some more often than others, but it's the price we pay for life and we have to learn to deal with it.
Sorry if this seems harsh, but reality is, and what an awful place the world would become if we plastered memorials everywhere without consideration for others.
I've said much the same about flowers by the road at accident sites. By extension then, I'm with you.
I want my face carved into the face of my local crag and I want the route on it to be called 'Mugwump'
Picture please, exactly where is it?
On a boulder below the route or on the actual edge. Obvious, discreet, etc. All makes a difference as to whether it's acceptable.
Personally, anything on the rock is not acceptable to me but others may have different views.
> I think that a little niche chiselled in the rock, so the persons ashes in their urn could be placed there as well. Or even a ring to place flowers.
They have these in Frankenjura, bit creepy!
> I've said much the same about flowers by the road at accident sites. By extension then, I'm with you.
I also agree. If everyone did it, it would be a nightmare. We all have grief - and an unlucky few have grief I wouldn’t know how to cope with.
There was one near us with a teddy bear and a child’s bike lashed to a growing tree with tight bailing twine; poor tree. The bike was rusting and the bear was rotting. The events leading to this memorial were as awful as you might imagine from its contents. Still the memorial really shouldn’t have been there, but I didn’t feel like complaining or removing it - local emotions and tempers had been flaring. We moved and don’t go walking there so often now so I don’t know what became of it.
Then again there’s another one in a well out of the way wood on a little used footpath that I really like. It’s a patch between a tree trunk and two exposed tree roots about 15 cm on a side that’s filled with white stones and a small wooden cross, and it’s regularly tended to.
There’s a roadside memorial in a village near us where there’s often some fecking stupid driving. There’s a number plate reading “Stu” nailed to a tree well inside the 30 mph zone, and some long dead and manky flowers. Perhaps the tree did it, in the way fighter pilots paint sillouettes on their planes....
Totally agree with all due respect to Les Millson, Sorry but it should be removed ASAP especially if it wasn't put there with the permission of the North Lee's Estate/Peak Park or it risks setting a dangerous precedent, and they could start appearing elsewhere on other routes and boulder problems anywhere!
Shame I didn't see the thread earlier or I would have taken a photo when I passed under this evening, unfortunately it was pitch black so I didn't see it
Whilst generally I dislike this sort of memorial I did find something I though was appropriate in N. Wales a few years ago. Half way up a valley was a memorial bench with a nice view, however if one looked closely you found a little cupboard underneath the seat. Inside was a bottle of port, a glass, and note inviting one to sit awhile, take a drink, and contemplate life. Although the glass looked like it needed a good clean we did follow the instructions.
There was a small memorial plaque in Memory of Len placed on a bouldery adjacent to Millsom’s Minion about 20 years ago. Not sure what happened to that one.
> Totally agree with all due respect to Les Millson
> what an awful place the world would become if we plastered memorials everywhere without consideration for others.
Yes you're right that 'if we plastered memorials everywhere' there would be a problem. But you're wrong though to assume one plaque on Stanage is an indication that that is what will happen. It's the slippery slope fallacy.
> Totally agree with all due respect to Les Millson, Sorry but it should be removed ASAP especially if it wasn't put there with the permission of the North Lee's Estate/Peak Park or it risks setting a dangerous precedent, and they could start appearing elsewhere on other routes and boulder problems anywhere!
So you're not actually concerned about this plaque then. What you're really concerned about is your personal hypothesis that this will lead to plaques of first ascentionists below loads of routes in the future.
I don't think that will happen for several reasons. Firstly not everyone automatically copycats everything that others do. Secondly many first ascentionists have already died. Thirdly those doing new routes are a minority that tend to do multiple routes. So if someone has done say 10 new routes in their life (which is not that many) then at the very most only 1 of their 10 routes will have a plaque.
Personally I think it's a really nice idea anyway: a way for the climbing community to remember those pioneers of the past. Claiming an engraved plaque is the same as litter is patently absurd.
There's an idea that as people get old they become more grumpy and disagreeable with age. I don't know how old the people on this thread are but I suspect that that might be the real reason for this weird reaction. It reminds of the type of controversy newspapers like the Sun try to stir up. Though at least they have a motive, even if it's not a good one, to sell more newspapers.
How old was Bill Murray when he deprecated this practice, I wonder?
Anyway, I don’t like these things.
> I don't know how old the people on this thread are but I suspect that that might be the real reason for this weird reaction.
Being opposed to memorial plaques in a place like Stanage is "weird" is it?
> but is this appropriate?
No, I don't think so.
Just think of the memorial plaques contract for when Gary kicks the bucket " no offense ment Gary"
> It's the slippery slope phallusy.
Trouble is there are all sorts of other reasons for putting up such plaques...favorite routes, favorite crags etc.... and placements will inevitablly be more likely on 3 star routes.
I actually think your view is the weird one: I do think most climbers regard this prominent sort of placement as littering, be they young or old. As said before, Bill set up a much more sensible and discrete solution at Stanage and this should have gone the same way.
Yes I am concerned with the plaque I think you have read between the lines of my post. I don't mind them on the back of a bench etc which will in all likelihood only be temporary but the spread of fixed ones in the outdoors should be discouraged particularly in the wilderness environments. Unfortunately we are all going to die and in increasing numbers if even only a small percentage of people who enjoy the outdoors have a plaque or similar in time they are going to spread to evey mountain top and special place and personally I don't think this fits in with the ethos of leaving no trace if possible and distracts from the experience.
> I've said much the same about flowers by the road at accident sites. By extension then, I'm with you.
Flowers, bloody flowers by the side of the road! I bloody hate flowers. It's bad enough in the springtime with daffodils springing up randomly all over the place. I don't understand why councils don't do something about it. Chop them down fast before they start causing problems. Why can't they just concrete over everything? That would stop them.
As for these people just leaving flowers by accident sites. What can you say? Total and utter scumbags. They don't seem to realise that the pollen from flowers can give people hayfever and even just the sight of them can make people's eye's hurt. I think the country has gone all soft with all these bloody memorials for the dead. People need to toughen up. People die. Get over it. Move on. If you did that somewhere like Saudi Arabia you'd be stoned to death. Imagine if they'd done that in the war every time a soldier was shot dead? There'd be flowers bloody everywhere and we'd have lost the war. Mind you maybe that wouldn't have been such a bad thing. I'm pretty sure Hitler wouldn't have let these flower loving hoodlums go running amuck, causing problems for everyone else. Round 'em up and send them to the gas chambers, filthy scum.
Needs to go.
How is it attached? Will its removal damage the rock?
Splendid rant, that man. That's the kind of impassioned speech we need more of on this site. Climbers? What are they all about anyway, why can't they get to the top of a crag by using the path? I think they're all commies, coming to turn us into red clones of the USSR. As for free speech, it should be taxed, £10 for every written or spoken word. That's what we need to get this country back on its feet again...
...ah, nurse. Time for my medicine already?
I seem to remember a small (loose) rock with his name carved (or painted) on it placed underneath the route shortly after his death, which I thought was a nice tribute.
Attaching a plaque to the buttress itself, on the other hand, is not something that any climber would want done in their name
As I climb indoors mainly, can I get my ashes mixed into the plastics that the holds are made of? The mould could also have my name and an inspirational message (enough space on a sloper or large volume).
Feel free to take this idea to Dragon's Den but I want 30% equity.
> I seem to remember a small (loose) rock with his name carved (or painted) on it placed underneath the route shortly after his death, which I thought was a nice tribute.
> Attaching a plaque to the buttress itself, on the other hand, is not something that any climber would want done in their name
I think the one I remember was a small silver coloured metal one........
Now there's an idea! I may go one further though and have a cast of my face made so they can mould a hold that looks like me to go with the plaque. I could feel satisfied I'm remembered while people practise their monos on my voluminous nostrils.
> I'm probably nit-picking
Not at all. This is a growing problem and not just plaques on rocks/crags. There also seems to be a proliferation of memorial benches springing up in our countryside. There was one a few years ago put on the top of Warton Crag (SSSI and nature reserve). It didn't last long. The last remaining part of it has found a use as a stepping stone over a muddy patch. Just earlier this week I spotted a slate plaque (not attached) plus ashes on the summit rocks nearby. Flowers and vases also regularly appear on top of the Upper Crag (and get removed). You can easily imagine the impact if more people want the same or similar (and they inevitably will). Inappropriate and should be removed by the park and held for the relatives to collect.
The BMC should have a Freepost address were we can send them
If not claimed within a year melt em down for scrap
I also generally dislike the plaques fixed to the rock, but what you describe sounds like a fine idea
No plaques, no stone stacks, no bolts, no Uni groups, no banana skins, and no ashes...leave no trace, man