Run No. 1505 3rd June
Venues: The Olde Leather Bottle
Beer: Timothy Taylor Landlord; Fullers London Pride; Sharps Doom Bar
Location: Leverstock Green
Hare(s): TBT OBE
Membership: Following TBT OBE’s graffiti Tags!
The RA & Hare
Raiser were offered a lift by the Hare to the venue, they waited to be picked up
at the bus stop at the Hatfield Tesco store. After several other old women had
driven by, obviously to do their shopping,
Hinge & Bracket TBT OBE & Paxo
pulled in to the bus stop.
On the way over to the venue, it was soon made clear that after a day swinging his golfing sticks abou toin the rough, with the rest of the Herts Hash Hackers, that TBT OBE would have a bone to pick with Fliptop [And it wasn’t about him winning once again! – Ed] As TBT OBE followed Fliptop’s motor on the way home, a stone shot out from under one of the wheels & hit the Windscreen of TBT OBE’s car, it now has a rather large crack that will cost him £75 access on his insurance! [TBT OBE should think himself lucky he wasn’t on his three seater Goodies bike! – Ed]
This week saw Friar Tuck & Smartarse (No not the F.U.K Full Moon one) come over from Cyprus, it seems that this area of Herts is known to Smartarse, for she has lived around these parts. Anyhow, at least they had brought the weather with them as this was the warmest day so far this year.
The early arrivals watched the Hare scuttle over the busy road & go off by the local Cricket Club on the Green, as ARP noticed that the sight screens weren’t enough to hide what he was up to as he wrote out the On Inn beside the Cricket Club House!
The Hare seems overly keen to get on with things, he was ready to call the circle with just under ten minutes to go, the GM was having none of this & the Circle was put on hold. The Attention of the Pack soon focused on the fact that the Hare had an old used plastic milk bottle of flour & a tin of gloss paint, this led them to wonder what the Trail was laid in? Or was it the paint tin that Tim Brook-Taylor used in the Goodies’ sketch based on Staying Alive? Has TBT OBE got a sink plug for a medallion?
The Hare finally got his moment, after the GM had carried out the welcoming introductions, he would set about going through the motions of drawing out the Herts Hash markings on the patio floor! This wasn’t for the benefit of the Pack as we all knew these, & the GM ignores them when he’s on a short cut, the real reason that this time was taken up could have been revealed when TBT OBE mentioned that the Trail was set in two part & that it wouldn’t be very long!
Without further a do the Pack were ushered off down the road, with the Hare telling the pack to go on down by the Green Man Pub, which was all well & good for the Keenies of the RA, Hare Raiser & Porky Pie for they had passed by the pedestrian crossing the others used to negotiate crossing the road, this left the FRB to have to contend with dodging between the cars on the busy road once the vehicles had finally slowed up enough.
The Pack soon discovered that the Trail was not set in flour, or gloss paint, but was done using a biodegradable grass spray paint. Well, that’s what they were told & if it isn’t true, then you will be able to run this Trail for 365 days without any problems! The RA actually did a ‘Trail’ with a Malaysian Hash on a Wednesday that is a permanent trail set along a road, the locals Hashers use this set course just as a method of keeping fit.
The Trail passed by the old row of cottages & then turned off of the edge of the main road to head down a long green strip that is the start of the Wayside path, this would lead by quite a few side streets of Brickfield & Kiln crescent to the north, no doubt the only remaining legacy of the area’s former use, as the route headed down in a south-westerly direction.
The sprayed Dots of white paint took the Pack on by the remnants of an old oak tree, the hollow shell of the trunk looked as if it had been hit by lightening & burnt out, the CHK near this was rapidly dealt with by Friar Tuck, with Porky Pie & ARP in hot pursuit as the Trail ran over more green space to the southwest in the estate to come out by the local tennis courts.
Friar Tuck & Porky Pie were soon over the Peascroft road to search the next section of green area, Porky Pie picked up the Trail as a series of Dots on a line of trees led down to where this path through the grassland & the one that Friar Tuck was on would converge at a gap in where the tree-lines acts like a funnel.
The Pack ran on through the gap to find the Dots leading over the long green between the School & Sports park behind the tree-line to the west of the green & the hones of the estate to the east. Suddenly Friar Tuck & Porky Pie stopped as they appeared to have lost the Trail. This led to Mr X, ARP, Sludge & My Lil’ all veering over toward Tiree Close & the garages below this road, but as they ventured over to the homes “On!” was called back on the green & the Trail resumed further down to Chambersbury road in Catsdell bottom.
The Hash passed a group of teenagers out for a stroll, that soon changed when one of the lads picked up one of the girls & ran off with her in the same southerly direction the Hash were on, they ran a bit once he had put her down & it looked like they may join the Hash. They didn’t!
The Trail came out to a wooden gate in the hedgerow along one side of the Chabersbury lane, the Trail crossed straight over & a CHK was found just beyond the Hedge on opposite side of the lane. The favoured option was to climb up the steep grassy slope of the westerly end of Bunker’s Park Reserve, this being the cornfield wild grass area. The footpath led up to the wood up on the top of the ridge, Porky Pie was first there & he found Trail leading up to a CHK by a footpath heading easterly in to the woodland.
By the time Fliptop & Mr X had reached the woodland’s edge they could see that Friar Tuck had found a Falsie in the valley below. Porky Pie continued along by the outer edge of the wood but he too would find a T, Mr X went to search through the woodland, but the first choice of paths had a couple of loud barking pooches stood there with their owners, just as he went to search the next option a call of “On!” came from down the slope.
The Trail now dropped down the grassy hillside on a westerly path that meets with the one Friar Tuck was on a little earlier! The Pack now followed the southerly path down the hill to Bunkers lane, here they again passed the teenagers as the Trail led through another wooden gate, where a sign warned of watching out for traffic as the Hash crossed the lane to enter another wooden kissing-gate.
The Pack were now in the Long Deans Nature Reserve, which is looked after by the Herts & Middlesex Wildlife Trust. It also happens to be a Hertfordshire BAP, BAPs [Whoa there Pebbledash! – Ed] are Biodiversity Action Plans for this area of semi-improved neutral & calcareous grassland. It was here that three blokes out training also stopped for a respite, they had drinks hidden in the undergrowth but as it was only water so it had little appeal for the Hash!
There was a CHK just within the Reserve & here an information sign could be seen to educate the Hash as to what they could see within this enclosed area. All of this was new running territory for Herts, which is unusual, but again it is an area that has been opened up more for conservation & leisure. Some were also quite surprised how green it had been coming down through Leverstock Green.
The Pack regrouped by the information board, as instructed by the Hare, who had promised the Pack that this would be a ‘Jelly Baby’ stop. There were those who were at the last Trail TBT OBE was involved with setting & He forgot to bring the Jelly Babies!
This time there sceptics were proven wrong as there were two bags of Jelly Babies produced by the Hare. As the Pack looked around, they could see what looked like a spray paint Dot on the gate that leads in to the east end of Long Deans wood running up on the southern ridge.
Time to set off once again & the Hare was soon having to call back those who had set off toward the gate up by the wood, it now dawned on the Hash that the Pack were going to be running a long loop down to the west.
Friar Tuck led the way through the shallow valley stretching out to the west, & sure enough this would be a loop as the Keenies of Friar Tuck, Porky Pie, ARP & Mr X ran all the way to the south-west end of the dog-leg valley & up to near the edge of Highwoodhall lane. These four turned back from the CHK at the end of the park. Back behind from where they had been, they could see the rest of the Pack short cutting up toward the footpath running along the edge of the wood.
There were a few of the Hash that should have known better & the RA was looking at giving all but four of the Pack a Down-Down for Short Cutting, this would go down to three by the time the Trail was over! Paxo had a fairly good reason for short cutting as he was still full of the lurgy that he claimed to have had for over a week, but Fliptop should have known better!
The Trail passed through a gate to enter Long Deans wood, the shaded route headed eastward, there was little room for any digressing from the marked path as wire fences kept the Hash on the way out in to the first of two large enclosed cattle fields.
Mr X caught up with Porky Pie as the Trail passed through the open gate at the northeast corner of the first hedged-in field of Long Saunders, here Porky Pie would tell the RA about the tale of a Spanish engineer whose wrench fell out as the undercarriage was let down on an incoming flight, falling a couple of thousand feet to crash through the roof of a house in Sarf End, narrowly missing a baby in the cot downstairs! This was told again back at the On Inn.
The footpath led up through the long lush grass of the next cattle field, Pond field, the herd were all congregated up in the southeast corner & were safely out of the way of the Hash. The path ran along side the large dense established hedge by Bunker’s lane, this would turn off through a kissing-gate, an arrow directed the Pack straight over the narrow rustic lane, then on to the edge of Bunkers Park nature reserve, here a CHK was found.
This area was farmed from Roman times until 1990’s, it was given to the Dacorum Council by the New Town Commission for leisure & amenity of the people of Hemel Hempstead, in 1996 it was reseeded with wild flower seeds & a new wood of native trees were planted out.
My Lil’, Porky Pie & Mr .X headed north-westward in to the planned out ‘Matterns’ an area of fenced of pastures, but before they could run down in to the established Chambersbury wood a T would stop my Lil’! Back at the CHK & these there could see that Sludge & Friar Tuck were fairing no better heading up along to the east beside the lane out to the main Bedmond road.
Mr X called out “Are you?” several times toward Friar Tuck & Sludge to which there was no reply as the Trail didn’t go that way, & with Sludge being Sludge he wasn’t going to return to the CHK as they both turned to the north, at the corner of the park these two could see the homes on the edge of Leverstock Green over in the far distance, so they would not go back to the CHK to join the RA in finding the correct Trail leading northward through the centre of the park.
The RA & My Lil’ reached the next CHK, almost dead centre of the grassland area. They called out “On to Check!” in the direction of Sludge & Friar Tuck, only for the two in the distance to the east to do the same! As Sludge began to run down to the northeast corner of the park, Mr X & My Lil’ realised that the Trail would take the eastbound footpath over to the CHK where the GM had been & left to head off to the north.
Perhaps Sludge was accidently short cutting as he may have been in awe of the old hedges that remain within the park, as some of these were used as a part of the boundaries for the old furlong system of farming, other sections of are still visible today. [That must have taken him back? – Ed]
My Lil’ & Mr X veered off of the main path to the east, as they cut across to pick up the Trail on its way to the northeast corner of the Park. All the while there were two very small remote controlled planes flying up above the Nature reserve, these were remarkably quite & Fliptop wondered if they were battery powered?
Anyhow, the Trail emerged out through the established hedgerow, that has been dated back to the 10th Century, to emerge on to Chambersbury lane, then running just a short way to the west before an arrow directed the Pack over to a footpath behind the homes of Autumn Glades. A very yappy pooch behind the wooden fence encouraged the Pack to run along this bit. The RA wondered if one of the front runners up ahead had stopped to scare the squirrels & upset the dog, as there was a large wet patch running from the fence & across the path?
The Trail stuck with the alleyway until the halfway mark, where the Pack were directed to the right & out on to Missenden Drive, at the end of this suburban street the Cricket Club could be seen. Straight over the end road & the On Inn was found before the Pavillion. The FRBs passed by this & crossed back to the Olde Leather Bottle, many were pleasantly surprised to find that they were Inn within an hour, for some it would be a 50 minute Trail.
The Keenies were soon on to the refreshments, discussing what a good run it was by TBT OBE’s standards! They were especially pleased that by the fact that the Hare managed to get around with the Pack & not get lost on his own Trail. It did seem that Smartarse may have got lost out on Trail, but in fact she had been delayed as she stopped off to have a chat with an old acquaintance. She later joined the Pack again back at the pub, but she wasn’t the last one there as Tent Packer arrived & promptly set off to do part of the Trail, just as the Circle was about to start!
The Down-Downs saw the Hare rewarded for a perfect Trail on a nice sunny evening; My Lil’ received his for reaching 69 Runs [Fnar! Fnar! Pebbledash! – Ed], with a thousand in front of that! The RA had decided not to give all of the Short Cutters a Down-Down, there wasn’t enough in the kitty to cover that! The RA himself was also out for completing his 999th Herts Trail, he admitted that sometimes it feels like he has run all of them at once these days!
Finally the Hashit, this was presented after a tale was told about the RA’s lift in, when Paxo was getting wet in the front passenger seat, as TBT OBE washed his windscreen with a large crack in it that was due to Fliptop’s vehicle throwing up stones!