Run No. 1459 23rd July 2012
Venue: Horse & Groom
Beer: Blaze of Glory, Batemans, Ruddles, Abbott, GK IPA
Location: (Old Hatfield)
Hare(s): My Lil’
Membership: Braver than all the rest!
Hot, Sultry, & Blazing Sun aren’t words that have graced the sentences of the weekly Trash on a regular basis this year, so it’ll make a change to be able to put them in this week’s report.
It was a rather disappointing turnout considering what a fine evening it was, the start of the summer holiday’s may have depleted the numbers, but at the start of this Trail’s opening circle there were only six! One of these was found in the Pub drinking, while another dashed in there with some purpose, then dashed out of the toilet as there was no paper, this was remedied & Zing-a-long-a-max could sit down & do his ‘Tax returns’!
The GM got the Run number correct, & then the Hare was introduced! The length of the Trail wasn’t given away by him, he did mention that there were short cuts but those who knew he had been away at the Essex Aleympics believed that he was suitably tired enough as not to set a Long Trail!
Things got underway by leaving the car park behind the Pub, dust led on through Salisbury Square, where Zing-a-long-a-max, Sludge & the RA were all taken on the short loop around the raised flower beds in this secluded open area of shops & restaurants. Mark E Mark & Lobby Lobster followed the Hare on a short cut up to the Job Centre & then on beneath the overhanging wing of the upper story of the building.
Sludge, as is Sludge’s way, had to get there by taking a short ‘Long’ Cut by way of the alley on the other side of the building! The Trail took the Pack down through the subway running beneath the Great North Road, to emerge on a CHK on the exits on the Hatfield station side of the road. Mark E Mark was called back as Lobby Lobster led the way up the steps to come up by the car park.
The Trail was found over by the end of the car park, it ran up the steep steps to the footbridge spanning the main line to Kings Cross, which was more than most of the Pack were up too!
The Pack crossed the lines, with Sludge being first down the opposite set of stairs to cross Beaconsfield road to find a CHK in the cut-through to Endymion Road, he was soon down the alleyway that cuts through to the French Horn lane, this would be a False Trail & he would come back as “On!” was called up Cranbourne road.
Zing-a-long-a-max returned from looking up the opposite way from Sludge, so westward the Pack went through the residential area to head up to the junction where Old French Horn lane joins Cranbourne road, here Mr X explained how French Horn Lane & Brain Close received their names, this was after Dennis Brain, French Horn player with the National Symphony Orchestra died when he crashed his TR2 car outside of de Haviland’s factory on the A1 in 1957.
Anyhow the Trail continued to the end of Cranbourne Road, Mark E Mark said he felt at home on this road, as the Pack continued on to where it joins French Horn lane, by now it was obvious that there was going to be little running from four of the Pack, only Sludge & Zing-a-long-a-max had any get up & go! Mr X & the Hare were suffering from the after effects of the Essex Weekend, while Mark E Mark & Lobby Lobster were just feeling lethargic in the sweltering heat!
The Dust now led down to the subways below one of the large open roundabout in Hatfield, this one located opposite the William Cecil Memorial Hall, the Pack tentatively took to this subterranean mugger’s paradise. Zing-a-long-max found one Falsie by the time Sludge & Mr X had started to search two of the other four options, Zing-a-long-a-max then redeemed himself with his second attempt & found the Trail leading out by St Luke’s & the St John’s Ambulance hut on St Alban’s Road East.
The Dust led along the outer hedge of St Luke’s Graveyard, then at the corner turned on to an alleyway that turns away from St Alban’s Road East, right by the house that used to be Mr X’s Grandmothers. The Footpath headed out northward, still by the graveyard & on the right hand-side where the houses that were built in the 1980’s line the way & now look somewhat older than they should.
Sludge & Zing-a-long-a-max where first to the next CHK, this was found on the entrance to Foxholes, a new, small estate. Zing-a-long-a-max soon went wrong as he searched an alleyway off to Stonecross Road in the east. He was soon back as Sludge called “On!” up further North toward the old Railway line which is now the Alban way, a part of the National Cycle Route.
Zing-a-long-a-max would go astray once again as he looked up the passageway out to Crawford Road, that is shuttered in with fence panels for the properties on either side. Mr X went wrong as he turned eastward on the former railway line, in the end the Dust was found off to the west.
The Pack were now skirting the edge of Birchwood area, often called Beirut by locals but the Hare made sure that the Pack were kept on the tarmac route, which is now a footpath & cycleway that leads into St Albans,.
Zing-a-long-a-max & Sludge soon got by the others, but to the Hare’s annoyance Sludge had taken his eye off of the ball & gone over the footbridge spanning Wellfield road. The Hare needn’t have worried as Sludge would leave the potential Short Cut & come back down from the line & cross back over from the west side of the road to join Zing-a-long-a-max on their way down a loop down Wellfield Road & then up along Lemsford Road.
The Two FRBs would join up with the others where the Alban Way is intersected by Lemsford road, they were just in time to catch them as the SCBs continued on along the next stage of the former line as it runs beside the Fiddlebridge Industrial Estate, it isn’t named after any dodgy work units there, but from the fact that the Pub at the other end has been called the Fiddle, Old Fiddle, New Fiddle & is currently the Cat & Fiddle. Cat & Fiddles are named after Catherine of Aragon, since she was known as 'Catherine la Fidčle'
passed by a couple out with their ‘drug dealer dog’, this managed to walk on by
Zing-a-long-a-max without wanting to have a chew on his little white
drumsticks legs! The RA was then made up to see the ubiquitous ‘abandoned
shopping trolley’ discarded in the shrubbery along the line’s edge, it wouldn’t
be a run through Hatfield without seeing one.
On the way the Pack passed by a sign that direct pedestrians toward the Town Centre, the alleyway off of the line didn’t look to inviting as it was pretty full of abandoned trash, so the Hash stuck with the former line.
Sadly Hatfield isn’t what it used to be, the 1960’s planners saw to that, it’s no wonder that the town has been select for the Mary Portas (Queen of Shops) make over! Ironically the roads through the centre of town have all just been resurfaced as the Olympic Torch used them on its route, obviously like other places this was done since Highways wouldn’t want anyone tripping over or falling into the potholes that were there only weeks before & dropping the Torch!
It’s been bad enough that the Torch was put out by water when it was taken down the Kayaking course in Broxbourne, Herts! It’s lucky that there is more than one alight, but it has made the news & can be seen on YouTube.
Anyhow, back to the Trail! The Pack continued westward, by now the air was full of clouds of what were possibly midges, as the hot weather had brought these little bitey critters out in droves to enjoy the Blazing Sun.
The Trail again briefly came off of the line & right near the by the Cat & Fiddle Pub, on St Alban’s Road West. There was no hanging around there for a Beer Stop as the Pack wanted to keep the laces in their Hash shoes. An arrow directed the Pack on to the final length of the old railway before reaching Cavendish way, this was the section that leads on beside the Galleria, or ‘the Gonorrhoea’ as Sis’s mum called it when she first saw the ‘outlet centre’.
A blob of
flour was craftily planted on the wooden panel fence lining the homes’ side of
the alleyway, this was right by a cut through that peels off to the left.
Sludge disappeared down this route through to the homes to the south of the
Gonorrhoea Galleria, the RA was right behind him at the start but then
suddenly stopped short of going through the cut-through. He thought better of
it & so it proved correct when the Hare marked the Trail further to the west.
The Trail came out on to Cavendish Way & the Hare suddenly seemed confused as to whether he had placed a CHK in the subway beneath the main road. He hadn’t, but this didn’t stop Zing-a-long–a-max from being led astray up & around toward where the old line heads out toward St Albans, where he discovered a Bar CHK!
Sludge caught up with the others as they made their way by the bus stops lining this road out of Hatfield, so he hadn’t been mugged out off of the railway line!
Meanwhile back at the On Inn, the Joint Monkey & TBT OBE were just setting off, they weren’t the last as Ketchup & Jaron were still to arrive, but the latter two managed to get around the whole Trail, whereas the Paxo & TBT OBE would only get so far before turning back to pick up the Inn Trail!
Having made their way toward the roundabout on Cavendish way, Mr.X, Mark E Mark & Lobby Lobster were all very hesitant to go off to one side & follow the Dust over the small green area, it wasn’t until the Hare joined them on the way over the short way to Collage Lane, there the Trail continued on the opposite side of the road by crossing over another green space, Mark E mark questioned how long Mr X had been running with H4 as he veered off toward Bishop’s Rise & had to be called back.
The Dust entered the small wooded area around a dell, within the wood Mr X, Sludge & Zing-a-long-a-max were caught out form a CHK in the middle of the little plantation, it was a Back CHK down in to the Dell & then back out to Vigor’s Croft. Zing-a-long-a-max decided that he would happily point out where the RA had checked out earlier only to find a T!
The Trail made its way on to Chantry Lane, one of the oldest routes in Hatfield lined with a few old & established cottages & other buildings, at the dead end of the lane the Trail took to the last remnants of a narrow rustic by-way that leads out on to the complete opposite of Bishop’s Rise, which these days seems to be completely occupied by Students.
The Trail crossed over Bishop’s Rise & continued on the second part of Chantry Lane, this led on between some local garages & the Water Company grounds, this would have the Pack merge out on to the playing fields at Roe Hill. A trek across the open grass had a slight discussion about which direction the Trail should go, the Hare pointed out the blob of flour on the corner of Roe Hill Hall.
The Pack made their way around the club house to come out on to Briars lane, there a turn away from the direction they really wanted led the Pack southward. Fortunately it wasn’t that far before the Trail turned tact as it led up Cedar road, Zing-along-a-max broke away from the rest as he found a CHK at the end of the T junction with Elm Drive.
The Trail was coming to the last leg, Zing-a-long-a-max caught back up with the others & asked why they had let him go off on a Falsie, Mr X explained that Zing-a-long-a-max was the one blowing his horn as he ran around the corner out of earshot! Anyhow, the original starting Pack were all together as they made their way northward up Woods Avenue.
The Trail crossed the road & came up to Oakwell School, the Trail turned off just beyond this, by the local Cadet Huts & not going as far as the Girls School, which led Mr X to quote the Fast Show character to say “Found at a Girls School, with my reputation!”
Those with local knowledge knew that there was a footpath running down beside this, that was they way the rail would head. Zing-a-long-a-max was tempted top go through the open gate halfway down the alleyway but Sludge’s warning was enough to bring him back around.
Having made their way out through the small wooded area along the edge of the path, the Pack would run down Old Rectory Road, but the Hash weren’t going to take the direct route to the end of the road & not on to French Horn lane, oh no! Not with this Hare.
The Last part of the Trail had the Hash taking to a convoluted route just after Onslow St Audrey’s School, where the Dust would work its way through the backstreet of Howe Dell, & the Hare had planted a Bar CHK just before the alleyway that cuts through Brain Close & out to French Horn lane.
Once over the road the On Inn was found before the underpass for the Railway line by ‘Grays roundabout’ then a second underpass, this one for the Great North Road to lead back into Salisbury Square, even here Zing-a-long-a-max had to be called back over from missing the most direct route to the car park!The Hare was the only one to have a Down-Down, most of the aprčs Trail was sat listening about the Essex weekend & Ketchups ‘erect’ blue monkey suit, or about T-B-T OBE’s aches & pains!