British cave diver Martyn Farr to join a team attempting a record for the longest ever cave penetration
British cave diving instructor and photographer Martyn Farr has travelled the world, exploring some of the world's most spectacular underwater caves. He will join a team next month as they attempt to set a world record for the longest ever cave penetration.
Three divers are pictured as they are about to enter the impressive entrance of Carwash Cenote in 2000, near Tulum, Quintana Roo, Mexico
Jenny Pinder swims through the tight underwater passages of the Grotta Giusti Cave in Tuscany, Italy. A far cry from the biting chill of British underwater caves, this 'spa cave' boasts waters at a balmy 35 degrees Celsius
Phil Dotchon swimming between mysterious cone-like underwater formations in Mimoso Cave, in the Matto Grosso du Sul, Brazil
Local cave diving instructor, Rony Valencia passing the warning sign near the entrance to the popular Gran Cenote Cave, near Tulum Quintana Roo, Mexico
Helen Rider swimming into a coral cave at 30m depth, off-shore from Hurghada in the Egyptian Red Sea
Helen Rider demonstrates buoyancy control and positioning in this clear underwater tunnel at Dinas Rock Silica Mine, in Neath Valley, South Wales
These photographs were taken by Martyn Farr - Britain's only cave-diving instructor and the country's best cave-diving photographer. Martyn [pictured above], from Crickhowell, Powys, Wales, will join an international team next month for a world record attempt - the longest ever cave penetration. Martyn will attempt to capture the team - made up of world's best cave divers - as they penetrate deeper into Pozo Azul cave, near Burgos, Spain, than has every been achieved before
Several sites around the UK, including Somerset, Derbyshire, Yorkshire and Sutherland in Scotland offer cave diving, and Martyn has dived some of the world's most spectacular locations. Included in his collection of photos is the Weebubbie Cave in the remote Nullarbor Plain of Western Australia - thought to be the world's largest underwater tunnel
British cave diving is notoriously dangerous, but Martyn feels learning here can only produce better and safer divers. He said: "Once you can cave dive here you can cave dive anywhere in the world. The systems here are narrow, it's cold and the visibility can be very poor as we have a lot of silt. When silt is disturbed you end up swimming inside a murky cloud and you can lose all sense of direction. All you've got to get you safely out is your guide-line leading you back to the entrance. If people come to me and they can cope here in the Brecon Beacons then they know they can go anywhere"
Although this potentially fatal sport usually requires teams to move equipment and bring safety in numbers, Martyn often ventures below the surface completely solo. He said: "When I am exploratory diving in systems that have not been dived before, I actually prefer being on my own.