Date = 23rd Sept 2018
Run Number = 1815
Venue = Chez Sis et Fliptop
Location = Royston
Hare/s = Fliptop
Beer = Ghostship; Doombar & lots of bottles of IPAS, Brewdog
Runners = 22
Virgins = 0
Visitors = 0
Newies = 0
Après = 4
Hounds = 0
Total = 26
Membership = Wishing the GM a very Hippo Bidet!
The weather overnight was pretty abysmal, the rain was still coming down as the Pack made their way to Chez Sis et Fliptop. The start had been delayed as the Train coming in with the RA & Beermaster didn’t arrive at Royston until 8 minutes past the hour, though after the short walk around to Chez Sis et Fliptop
The persistent rain didn’t really affect the Hare’s plans as the weather forecast had looked ominous all week for the Sunday, so Fliptop’s Plan was to set a shorter than normal Trail, with the majority of the time being taken up by the searching for a series of Blue Plaques scattered around the ancient town to fill in a quiz sheet’s answers.
Some, after a quick glance at the sheet already knew the answer to one of the Questions, the one about ‘You can bet here now, but what lies under the Grille?’ For those who were on the Hash Trail that took the Pack down in to the Royston Cave should have setting, or maybe resetting the Trail, the introductions were down to TBT OBE to welcome the Pack to the Hash. His speech started well until it came around to the R*n number which he announced as 1812, as Paxo stated at the time that he must have a thing about the number 1812, as the Run number was now 1815!
Things began by the Pack heading out to Tannery Drift then on down to the main Kneesworth Road, where those who arrived by Train had already seen the arrow directing the Pack southward toward the centre of town. Mr X, who knew of the arrow, led the way as the Trail came down to stop on Kneesworth Street & across over to the eastern side via a small traffic island, once over the road the Trail continued just a few degrees east off of due south.
An arrow directed the Pack off of the main road & on to ‘The Green’ which is the name all that remains of the built-on area of homes & there is not much in the way of a grass area there now. More arrows & these showed the way eastward on the alleyway of Butcher’s Baulk, this long stretch of a tree-lined & fenced in path led north-eastward, then turned a few degrees eastward as it eventually came to a CHK by the gap in the southern tree-line. Mr X searched in King James Way, but he wasn’t convinced as his natural instinct was to follow Butcher’s Baulk to its conclusion on the Melbourn Road.
Sure enough, Mr X was called back as My Lil’ called “On!” from back on the remaining section of Butcher’s Baulk. Ryde, Tablewhine, Milf, Sludge, Wanktlers, Sparky & Tent Packer had all continued along on the path’s route, passing behind the School of Dancing, the Theatre School & then on between the grounds of St Mary’s School to the south & the Royston Ceremony to the north. Skip, Psycho, Fireball, Party Animal & Little Hole all followed on.
Only My Lil’ chose to search down the Melbourn Road back toward the main town, while Milf, Tablewhine, Ryde & others turned away from the centre. Sludge & Mr X had their doubts about heading away from Town, this proved correct as My Lil’ kept running away but no sound of any calling was heard. Eventually these two also found the Trail & called it so, but Sludge & Mr X’s calls of “On!” were soon drowned out by the passing sirens of couple of ambulances that got Milf excited, then a police car dashed by blaring away, it was all go!
The rest of the Pack followed on as they crossed the start of King James Way, off of the roundabout on the old A10, Melbourn Road. The Trail wasn’t diverted from the route straight down to the large roundabout with Melbourn Street on its western side & the Newmarket Road on its opposite eastern side, it was around on the right to Melbourn Street that the first H (History) CHK.
The Pack were soon scratching around to remove their Quiz Sheets from their protective covers, for Plaque No.1 on the Quiz Sheet was related to the Royston Town Hall, which now houses the ‘Picture Palace’ replacing the original cinema that was knocked down & replaced by what looks like ‘Maximum Security Retirement Apartments’ directly opposite across the roundabout. Plenty of scribbling down on the Sheets now began, though with the rain still coming down any writing down of answers had to be quick!
The Trail would now take a slightly convoluted route, to take the Hash over the Pedestrian crossing lights to get them safely to the southern side of the east-west street, this brought everyone back toward the roundabout, following the wall & then the railings of the Priory Memorial Gardens, where there was a clue relating to the gates for the Nine entrances into the green park.
Fliptop’s quiz required the one on the eastern gates, which have a Plaque on the red-brick pillars relating to Arthur W. Whydale who was the Priory Gardens design winner at the 1951 Festival of Britain.
There were other’s gates that included a dedications but these were not Plaques, one to the Home Guard on it on a green Plaque. While further around there is a set of white painted metal gates as a First World War Honour for L/CPL Walter G Offord whose initials are entwined on one gate, with the date Aug 24 1916 on the opposite one.
TBT OBE was spotted wandering into the well-kept park, while My Lil’ led the way ‘On Trail’ around the A10 as it swings around to the southwest on the opposite side of the road to the Green Man as the road becomes Market Hill.
Some looked over at the Green Man but those who didn’t failed to see any Plaques over there, which mean they missed the one on the Pub wall about the Greenlawns, where the playing of bowls once took place!
“On!” was called on Fish Hill, the road to the northwest that is just before the Green Man. The Pack now entered the old Market Area of Royston, most looked over at the building that was once the ‘British School for the Children of Non-Conformist Families’ & some thought this was an answer to one Clue, but it wasn’t!
With a short trot along Market Link that joins Fish Hill to Market Hill, Sparky seemed a little lost as the Trail was eventually tracked down over the car park by the Old Bull Inn, on the way back over to Upper Kings Street, at the bottom end of Market Hill, Wanktlers moved over to the rear entrance of the Hotel to see if this had any Plaques? It does on its frontage, but none around the Tradesman’s Entrance! [Steady there Pebbledash – Ed!] Those with keener eyes spotted another Plaque in the distance, this was on a small white terraced home on London Road, a road mentioned on the Quiz Sheet.
Frantic scribbling from Mr X, hoping others would not spot this as he ran back, it failed as even TBT OBE could see the Plaque telling that Lord Mounteagle [Calm down Pebbledash! – Ed] alerted King James I (VI) to the Gun Powder Plot in 1605. Everyone seemed to get this one before crossing back over toward the Chequers & taking to the Trail as it continued northward down King James Street. Needless to say that you have probably sussed that King James I (of England & VI of Scotland) had a Palace in Royston.
The Trail passed by the Royal Bengal, nothing to do with King James, even though Curry was first recorded in a cookbook from the reign of Richard II 1367-1400, this was before the introduction of Chilli Peppers from the South Americas, so relied on mainly Indian spices for flavouring. Anyhow, close scrutiny took place as the Pack made their way down toward the centre of town, the former White Swan Plaque was looked at, but nothing fitted in with the clues.
Another turn was to be had & this took the Pack away through a passageway on the right, the Pack were now on to High Street to run straight across to where the Trail continued eastward for the Pack to be taken up another back-passage [Careful Pebbledash! – Ed] to emerge out on to the end of Market Hill.
Another H CHK was found outside the front of where an old large white building stands, with an impressive colourful painted & guilded Royal Coat of Arms that stood out upon what was the Courthouse, with blackened highlighted recesses there was also the obvious date of 1849 emblazoned across its façade of the now Bar, indicating the year of its erection [No Pebbledash! – Ed] Hence this was the easiest clue to answer.
This date was the answer to the Plaque question relating to the date of its Erection. At least there were tables with large umbrellas for the Pack to get out of the drizzle to write on their answer sheets.
Time to move on & a Falsie was discovered on Jepps Lane away to the west, this one would cause some controversy later on as only the ones who ran this Falsie would see the Plaque about the Masonic Hall once being the Congregational Church, known as the ‘Old Meeting’
So, there were some sneaky ones who kept the last Plaque to themselves, leading the rest of the Hash away from this answer & out through the narrow lane that cuts diagonally toward the grounds of St John the Baptist Church, but on the way through to the most prominent Church in Royston, that sits before the Priory Memorial Gardens, the RA was worried that the Hash could lose a few members of the Pack in getting them beyond the Help the Aged shop!
The RA now broke off as he realised that he had ran by one of the earlier clues, & so went back to the get the name of the Architect of The Priory Gardens. When he returned he saw Psycho, Party Animal, Little Hole & Skip were all over at the Banyer’s Hotel, where another clue was answered – though as Sludge & Tent packer Pointed out that the dates of 1739-1752 meant the Rev. Edward Banyer DD*, Vicar of Royston was only 13 years of age! [He was probably the Vicar of Royston for 13 Years! – Ed] (*DD Doctor of Divinity).
The Pack were now scattered all over the centre of Royston, heading toward the ‘Roy Stone’ in its Centre. Everyone seemed to take in the ‘Prince’s Lodgings’ – this too proved a bit controversial as Wanktlers pointed out that Charles I was actually named as being ‘Prince of Wales’ at the time of his stay in Royston, in what would his home when the Royal Court was in town.
Over on the opposite south side of the road the pack could see Betfred, where under the grille the Royston Cave is, the Plaque on the Bookies wall informing the Pack of this. Psycho asked if the Hash has ever been to the famous Royston Cave, Mr X said that we had, when Fliptop set a Trail in Royston a year or so ago. Psycho said that she & Skip must have been away when that happened.
Many went over to the Jolly Postie, but the Plaque there related to it once being the site of a medieval hospital, this was not on the quiz list. There were far more Plaques than Clues, which would have Hashers going off to look at these Red Herrings.
The Last few answers would be found almost in a line on the final length of the Trail, with Tent Packer & a couple of others having been to the former Equerries, where King James ‘retested’ & has the answer to ‘Theresa’s Mob meet here now?’ As it has been home to the Royston Conservative Club since 1898.
Across from the Con Club was a Plaque for what was the Guard House, the billet for the Bodyguard of King James I. The Plaques were now coming fast as another question could be answered for the ‘You put it on you toast?’ as the local Chip-shop was once the King’s Buttery – the Royal Kitchens which seems rather apt.
Only a few left on the sheet & Royal Servants, these were soon answered. The building where the King’s dogs & horses were kept, was written down & then the great named the King’s Paradise, the Kings Bowling Green, was found on the western side of where the two narrow one-way sides of Kneesworth Street becomes one wider two way road. But, as Paxo pointed out when the answers were read out, not only did he play bowls there, it was also the place where King James sign Sir Walter Raleigh’s Death Warrant – but as quiz master, Fliptop explained for Paxo this did not count as it on an information sign & wasn’t on a Plaque!
Finally there was ‘the Triangular Building’, which turned out to be the Old Police Station for Cambridge Constabulary, as Royston was split in two, between Cambridgeshire & Hertfordshire until boundary changes in 1896, before this it had two Police Forces, with the Herts Police Station being on the corner of Priory Lane & Market hill, where it still remains.
The very last leg was to get back over Kneesworth Street, the around on to Tannery Drift, where the building one the corner has its own Plaque relating to another Whydale, who was awarded a VC & the On Inn was found.
There were plenty of snacks as the Pack settled in, meeting up with the après Hashers of 3 D, one of the lads (Port or Starboard?) Mrs Mallett, Flanders & Sis, who was preparing the meal!
Nothing could be better than having a beer & peruse the old photo’s that Sis & Fliptop had put out, many from over 20 years ago, many laughed at the changes in the few hashers still with Herts after all this time, Mr X explained that these were form the days when he had dark hair & didn’t go for the current ‘Platinum Blonde’ look! But the prize photos were of an almost naked Fliptop stretched out in a series of poses. Heaven knows what 2-1-2 Maureen thought of these ‘racy photos’?
There was also a lot of ‘back-slapping’ comments between those who had taken part in the Panshanger Park R*n the day before managed to hand out a few Hash Cards & created some interest. Strangely enough, all of those who ran this came in within a window of few minutes around the half hour mark – we will be taking part in another one for some more advertising.
The Quiz took place, with a lots of groans & a lot of contesting of a few of the afore mentioned questions, Wanktlers was pretty well on this case, strangely enough he came out on top as the winner! For which he won a box of chocolates [Curtesy of the Hare’s Diet? – Ed]
The Down-Downs took place inside, though even by now the Sun had come out & it was a splendid day out there. The plastic sheet on the carpet was handy as the Hare was called up for his well-deserved Down-Down. Ryde & Tablewhine were out as esteemed visitors; While TBT OBE was out for his love of the 1812 Overture! Wanktlers was out for winning the Quiz; Sludge was out for taking part in the Park R*n, which Mr X said he has to take part in as well as he wanted to experience seeing Sludge take part in one Trail without him being able to short cut own his own Trail!
Finally before the Circle was stood-down, it was revealed by a sheepish Fliptop that the mysterious whereabouts of the missing Hashit, turns out that when Fliptop was awarded it at the White Horse, Hertingfordbury trail, that was the last that was seen of it – it may still be there to this day!
Unusually Paxo didn’t announce Ladies & Children First, instead Sis got the Veggies fed first, then the rest took their turn for spot tucker. The selection of sweets would put a few pounds on, the highlight was Psycho’s Birthday Cake for Fliptop, in the shape of a Putting Green, all of these were later washed down with a very nice 1977 Port! It was a great day all round.