Date = 13th August 2017
Run Number = 1749
Venues = Chez My Lil’
Location: Welwyn Garden City
Beer = Black Sheep; Spitfire: Hobgoblin Gold, King Goblin, Porter;
Hares = My Lil’
Runners = 13
Virgins = 0
Visitors = 0
Newies = 0
Après = 2
Hounds = 0
Total = 15
Membership = "Panda bottle, only a panda bottle!"
A Barbeque needs good weather & the RA certainly came
up trumps with a nice warm & sunny morning. The Hare had been out the evening
before setting the Trail & everything was almost in place, all that was need was
the Pack to arrive. Sludge & Flanders were the first to arrive, closely
followed by the RA, then it was down to a wait for the GM & JM, who eventually
arrived without TBT OBE, who we all believed was
capsizing sailing at his
The Trail started late, the GM claimed she was waiting or ‘Sperm ‘ead o’clock’, which he hadn’t delivered with his usual tutting & tapping of his watch. So, the Circle was called out in the front garden of Chez My Lil’, here the GM welcomed the Pack to the Hash, she included the return of Pepé le Pew, the lure of food is normally strong reason to turnout.
After the normal booing as the Hare’s name was announced, it as followed by My Lil’s spiel. Cheers soon replaced the negativity as a mention of Short Cuts were mentioned before allowing the Hash to set off down westward toward the Chequers Roundabout.
Things began with a rather loud reveille like blast from Sparky on his new horn, which made sure that none of the Hare’s neighbours would enjoy any more of their Sunday lay-in! The RA had noted that My Lil’ doesn’t start his Trail with a CHK from the outset of a Hash, instead the Pack had to wait until after falling for a Bar CHK around on Chequers, after having to come back & run in to the subways in to the sunken roundabout.
Alfa Male went wrong again, as headed up toward Chequer’s Field but was soon to return to find the rest following the Trail on the west verge of the southbound section of Chequers, but it wasn’t for long as the Trail led in to the edge of the Creswick plantation. Flanders, Sludge, Pebbledash & Paxo now all now got head of the RA, who had stopped to take of his Hash shoe since he believed he had a nail coming through the sole.
After some time messing around with a set of keys, Mr X thought that he had broken the end of the nail off, but it didn’t work as he could still feel the protuberance resulting in him walking to catch up. As Sparky followed the longer loop he was heard to protest most loudly about the nettles, which the RA said didn’t sting this time of year! Pepé le Pew was setting off that way but like Sparky decided that he would cut over the enclosed field beside Chequers.
The Trail crossed the main route to Hatfield & took to an east bound alleyway behind the flats & leading out on to the kink in the domestic road of Elliot Close, the arrows pointed the way over the T junction where this joins Boundary Lane, named after the fact this was once the boundary between Welwyn Garden & Lord Salisbury’s Land of Hatfield House estate.
A CHK on the lane saw the Trail cut through the wide open footpath on the dead-end of a spur road of Dry Croft, which leads out on to Middlefield. Here Mr X set off after Ewok, Wanktlers, Alfa Male & Sparky on the loop down Middlefield to Boundary Lane & then a short way to Kates Croft. They emerged from the loop where the SCBs were walking up along Lady Grove & this in turn drops around to the south & out on to Boundary Lane, near to old section of narrow hedged-in Holly Bush Lane that heads out in between the fields to the south of Welwyn Garden City.
A CHK was found at the Junction, this saw Wanktlers & a few others caught out as they looked out away from town, then ‘On!’ was called around on Hollybush lane as it heads northward toward Howlands, by this point the RA was slowed up as the object in his shoe was coming through once again.
Arrows directed the Pack over Howlands & through a series of back alley footpaths that link that various sections of Mount Way [Careful there Pebbledash! – Ed], this seemed to be a bit of a hindrance for Sparky, who had managed to go wrong at every turn, which amused the Hare no end.
With the majority of FRBs going wrong it allowed the RA to use his local knowledge as the Trail left its easterly course to work its way out behind the liter by a garage block & out beside Howlands House, a complex for single mothers. The Dust crossed a small green space then came out to the crossing on Howlands to reach the new builds of flats that now sit upon what as the old QEII Hospital.
On the way further eastward, the Dust would lead the likes of alfa Male & especially Sparky off down Howick’s Green before returning to Howlands & spotting Mr X, Pepé le Pew, Sludge & Paxo turning off & making their way down through the long wispy grass in a width of fallow land that is the entrance to the woodland that sits behind the QEII grounds.
At the point where a metal kissing gate marks the entrance to the Nature Reserve, a CHK was found. The Hare marked this with a Short Cut straight on southbound, while the Keenies like Ewok had already made their way down in to the stream & over to the opposite bank inside the woodland to take on a southward path in amongst the trees.
Having caught up, yet again, Sparky’s descent down the stream’s embankment had a lot of screams from him, this kind of reminded a few of the Late Grunter, who had a similar incident further up the brook when he got entangled in a lot of brambles. Sparky clambered the opposite back & sounded his horn.
A woman out walking her Scottie Dog enquired what the flour was about, this was explained but she still looked perplexed as to what a Paper-Chase was, though the RA was explaining this while holding his shoe in his hand as he final extracted the nail, which was actually a sharp stone. By the time he had finished with shoe repairs (Cobblers to you all!) he elected to join the SCBs on the shaded grassy route up to a Held CHK.
Here the likes of Ewok, who led the way through the Commons Wood, were joined by Alfa Male, Max Factor, Sparky & Wanktlers from the woodland run, then Sludge, Pepé le Pew, Mr. X, Paxo, Flanders & Pebbledash on the parallel path that only knocked out a few loops & diversions in among the trees.
The Trail resumed & now Mr X could run as he joined the FRBs on a loop out through the feral land on the east side of a fenced in area of saplings & young trees. This loop dropped down to the straighter & more direct path that the SCBs were on, the timing was again spot on as the FRBs came down to join this route just as the SCBs ambled along. Paxo was heard to mutter some slightly misleading comments of “On! Back!” that almost slowed up Alfa Male.
The Trail headed back in to the trees, this time those in the Nature Reserve area of Holywell Hyde, here there were a few ponds on the east, to the west the Homes on the edge of Welwyn Garden City. The running surface changed to duckboards while crossing the softer boggier ground. Worryingly some of the slats had a lot more give than the Hash expected. A CHK was found by a split in the path & now Mr X went wrong as he followed the other FRBs on the Garden City side of the of the wetland area.
Ewok now chatted to Mr X about the Red, White & Blue theme for UK Nash Hash 2017 & it seems that the only thing she could find was a Union Jack Dress à la Gerri Halliwell when she was in the Spice Girls, Mr X said well if you’ve got Ginger Hair you may as well flaunt it! The GM ignored this comment & carried on.
The Trail came up to a CHK point just before the start of Holwell Hyde Lane, the Falsie off along a cycle route out by the fishing lakes to the A414 was pretty much ignored, Wanktlers went off to look out on the green space between the Nature Reserve & the homes of the Second Garden City, he didn’t find anything but Mr X was still convinced that the Trail should be turning here, so he retraced Wanktlers steps & went just a few feet further to pick up the Dust on the alleyway out though to Desborough Close, here he emerged on to & then crossed over Howlands again & took to the alleyway as the Arrows directed in the Hall Grove area of Welwyn Garden.
As he came out to the end of the alleyway, Mr X found a Bar CHK out on the short dead-end side road of Box Field but instead of running straight back to the others, he decided that he would hide behind the wall of one home until the rest of the FRBs had made their way up to the Bar CHK, Mr X was full of it as he laughed all the way back & the Hare was also happy to see that the others had been lured away.
The Trail was now heading in the right direction, Westward along Howlands but not for too long as the Dust would head on to an older footpath that cuts through to the small green space enclosed by homes. While one weird local stripped off his top to sit on the kids climbing frame, the Hash sensibly avoided him & followed Sparky who was heading out toward a gap in the tree line that looked like the way out, but they were soon called back by the Hare & the Trail would be picked up at the west end of the little park.
A split in the path had the Hare marking a Short Cut straight on over Sheepcote before coming out on to Moorend & out over Beehive Lane to pick up one of the entrances in to the King George V Fields, on the Hatfield Hyde area of Welwyn Garden City.
It was mentioned that it was a surprise that it hadn’t been built upon, but like the UK’s other 471 King George V Fields they are a memorial to the King who, like his son, was never supposed to be Crowned but after the death of his elder Brother to influenza became the King who saw the Country through World War I.
In 1936, after the King George V’s death, Sir Percy Vincent formed a committee to determine a memorial that was not solely based on the idea of a statue. The concept of funding & erecting a single statue in London & setting up the King George's Fields Foundation to carry the late king's name forward through future generations with the aim:
To promote and to assist in the establishment throughout the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland of playing fields for the use and enjoyment of the people.
Each of the playing fields would:
Be styled 'King George's Field' and to be distinguished by heraldic panels or other appropriate tablet medallion or inscription commemorative of His Late Majesty and of a design approved by the Administrative Council.
Money was raised locally to buy the land, with a grant made by the foundation. After purchase the land was passed to the National Playing Fields Association, to "preserve and safeguard the land for the public benefit". Land was still being acquired for the purpose during the 1950s & early 1960s. King George's Fields Foundation was dissolved in 1965, they are now legally protected by ‘Fields in Trust’ & managed locally by either the council or a board of local trustees.
Now began a trot around the eastern edge of the large open green space, with the Keenies of Sparky & Wanktlers hugging the hedgerow of the back gardens of the homes on the on Mount Way, while others cut directly over toward St Mary Magdalene. It was noticed that lack of kids playing cricket, soccer or any other sports. Mr X & My Lil’ were among those who lamented the lack of any sport being played on an ideal day for it, Ewok make gestures with her hands to indicate what the teenagers do at home these days [No Pebbledash! She was indicating the use of computer game console controllers! – Ed]
Little did they know, but the SCBs had spotted that in the northwest end of the park was a solitary Circus act taking place, but there wasn’t a large crowd to witness this feat. The Trail would leave the Park at the entrance almost opposite the Hollybush Shops, cutting through Walnut Grove that runs beside them, the On Inn was found as this turned from westward to southward to emerge out on to Howlands.
Back at Chez My Lil’ & the Barbeque was under way, but there were plenty of nuts & nibbles, though Pepé le Pew picking out the cashews from the peanuts! Also there were small peppers stuffed with cheese, then out came the Chicken wings, which had to be kept away from Lola.
Paxo, being Paxo, was on to the Barbeque & tending to the meat, while the rest enjoyed a nice Ale or Cider under the shade of the canopies. The first load of Burgers were ready, before Paxo tackled the sausages. Trashes were handed out, then Pepé le Pew enquired as to where the Book was? Seems it was still in the house!
Pepé le Pew then sat there saying “Surely I must have done a Trail since the Wedding?” but after a lot of page turning Pepé soon discovered that he hadn’t, much to the delight of those who reckoned that this was the last one.
TBT OBE arrived just in time for this, as did a smartly dressed Sloppy Seconds just before the Down-Downs took place. The circle was called, the Hash toasted & then the RA was called upon, firstly the Hare was called forward & it hadn’t gone unnoticed that when he had fulfilled his other Duties as Beermaster, he had pour himself a Down-Down of the far superior Ale - which had appeared once the ‘Run of the Mill’ stuff was going down.
Anyhoo, it was a fine Trail with enough twists & turns to keep the Pack together well & confuse Sparky. All of which led on to Sparky getting a Hit for getting caught out the most on the Trail. Pepé le Pew was out for his return & completing his first Herts Hash Trail since Max & Alfa’s Wedding. Sludge was out as a little earlier he was busy drumming up volunteers for the next few Run on the Hare-line. Ewok was out for her ‘Basic Training’ video on an assault course, which, well, looked a little tame as a 70 year old outshone her efforts!
Finally Mr X was not awarded his for the RA’s responsibility with the weather, he got his from out of his old Hash Trainer for having a sharp stone in it for half the Trail! Most of the Ale poured out of the Trainer, since it has worn sides that are open along the seams.
Back to enjoying the Afternoon, G&T’s were offered up & these were pretty strong, later there was Port but all through the rest of the afternoon My Lil’ was heard to call out like a costermonger “Panda Bottle!” as he tried to encourage [as if they need it! – Ed] to buy another bottle of Ale at a pound a time.
One of the girls noticed that with his Hash Top, which matched his 1200 Run Herts Hat, My Lil’ looked like he works at Papa John’s Pizza. Mr X said it was better than a couple of weeks ago when he & My Lil’ were compared to Kevin & Perry!
As the RA set off home, he saw the sight of TBT OBE walking down toward the Chequers Roundabout, that’s dedication just to get your name in the Book!