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The name Poole's Cavern comes from a local robber called Poole, who is reputed to have lived in the cave in the 15th century. The cavern is part of the Wye system, the Wye is a subterranean brook that enters the cave at the end of the guided tour from a boulder choke. The whole tour path follows the banks of this river. The cave has been visited for 5,000 years since Neolithic tribes sheltered here. Several archaeological digs have revealed Stone Age tools and artefacts, Bronze Age pottery and a wealth of Roman material. The Cave is famous for its range of interesting stalactite and stalagmite formations which have been coloured by minerals leached out of the lime-tips on the hillside above, including manganese (blue-grey) and iron (orange). The water permeating through the cave is also very high in calzite and the flowstones below the former quarry grow five times as fast elsewhere! It opened as an official showcave in 1853.