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Two British scuba divers prepare to dive the wreck of the Kyarra off Dorset, England on the centenary of her sinking: Saturday 26 May 2018

DAN advocates a safe return to diving

For the past 12 months most divers have not been able to dive as much as they would like, and many haven’t dived at all. Now that the rollout of the Coronavirus vaccine program has commenced, and the weather improving, it seems that various COVID-19 regional lockdowns are beginning to ease, and scuba diving activities should begin to resume in several Northern Hemisphere countries.

If you’ve been out of the water for a while, it’s essential to take time planning your safe return to diving. DAN

Divers at Porth Dafarch Beach, Wales

The BDSG advocates divers prepare for a return to UK diving

A BDSG spokesman states "Although we are currently in lockdown, it is time to start preparing to scuba dive UK sites and seas. We are all very keen to get back in the water again.

We understand that everyone is heartily sick of COVID-19 rules, hence this is an appeal for divers to do the right thing, and behave accordingly. Please take into consideration the following guidelines as you get set to scuba."

Medical Fitness

Divers need to comply with relevant medical requirements, and medicals may have lapsed, so check your dates. There is now the added complication of any impact COVID-19 may have created. Your respiratory system can be affected by the Coronavirus and can have long term effects that could impact on your ability to dive safely. If you have any doubts, seek professional medical advice from a diving doctor.

Ghost Diving establishes a new chapter in the UK

The international volunteer diver organisation—formerly known as Ghost Fishing—was founded in 2012 to locate and remove lost, snagged and entangled fishing gear or "ghost fishing" equipment from our oceans and seas, across the globe.

From day one this important role has always been conducted by groups of highly experienced, specially skilled, volunteer technical divers who are used to team diving on standard gases, using a set equipment configuration. The divers involved understand and appreciate the hazards of these dives.

Correction Notice

Dr Rich Walker, Chairman of Ghost Fishing UK advised us in writing on the 15 February 2021. 

"In addition GF-UK focuses on writing and selling removal courses to non-technical divers.

"Our course was written years ago, and we categorically do not "sell” them. The course is free of charge to all that are selected to attend. Delivering courses is not a primary focus of Ghost Fishing UK. It is a necessary component of maintaining a safe and effective team." Rich Walker

St Helena: Diving in the Remote South Atlantic Oasis

Whale shark, St Helena. Photo by Scott Bennett.

Outside my window, the South Atlantic lay unbroken—an azure expanse of ocean below and sky above. Three hours after passing the Namibian coast, a lone patch of clouds appeared on the horizon. As we approached, I could just discern patches of green peering through. Atop a narrow ridge, a tiny strip of runway appeared, the sheer drops at each end plummeting to the sea.

Kraken have teamed up with champion freediver Beci Ryan and Project AWARE, to launch the first in a new series of "deep-sea inspired" limited editions rums

Kraken to launch 'Unknown Deep' Rum this October

Kraken UK are collaborating with competitive freediver Beci Ryan, because the drinks company has announced that it is opening its first underwater ‘Dive Thru'.

Beci Ryan has been tasked to freedive the depths of the National Diving & Activity Centre in Chepstow, to salvage bottles from a treasure chest full of 'Unknown Deep' rum.

Project AWARE

There is an additional twist to this product launch—Project AWARE has teamed up with Kraken UK, and that's good news. The ocean conservation charity that encourages scuba divers to litter pick underwater and remove marine trash, has confirmed that a £1 from the sale of every bottle of 'Unknown Deep' will be donated to Project AWARE. Whilst this is a new initiative, it is not a new concept. Over the years, Project AWARE has teamed up with various non-diving partners to help raise funds and awareness about marine debris.

Distinctive Bottle

Alcoholic drinks bottles tend to fall into two camps. There is the straightforward, plain bottle. A practical ordinary vessel that holds the liquid, and does not excite or thrill you. Then there is the limited edition, exclusive, collectible bottle that catches your eye because it is so attractive. Some bottles are modern and funky, and some take their inspiration from historic flasks.

Kraken Rum

 

A freediver went to sea sea sea⁠
To see what she could see see see⁠
But all that she could see see see was bottles of rum in the deep blue ... quarry

Diving Then and Now: The Wookey Hole Caves—Birthplace of Cave Diving

Penelope Powell and Graham Balcombe kitted up in Wookey Hole Cave for the first ever cave dive in 1935. Historical photo courtesy of Mendip Cave Registry and Archive Cave Diving Group.
Penelope Powell and Graham Balcombe kitted up in Wookey Hole Cave for the first ever cave dive in 1935. Historical photo courtesy of Mendip Cave Registry and Archive Cave Diving Group.

The beginnings of cave diving can be traced to the Wookey Hole Caves in England. And 85 years later, divers like Matt Jevon are still doing their part to discover this cavern’s full potential.

Lady in red. Helen Farr loved red! She is pictured here at Jug Hole, Florida

The cave diving community mourns the loss of Helen Farr

Helen Farr was "a massively committed and active cave diver" of two decades. Although you might not realise it, you will have probably seen her photo in a diving magazine, a mainstream newspaper, a cave diving book (such as the iconic 'The Darkness Beckons', third edition) or featured in a presentation.

Helen was 100% committed to the sport [cave diving]. Richie Stevenson, Underwater cinematographer