Date 3rd November 2019
Run Number 1881
Venue Chez Sis et Fliptop
Beer A selection of Wychwoods & selection of Greede King
The second Trail for some stalwarts within a week, another Trail with food afterwards & this time it concentrated more on the sweeter side of things, with this being an Ale & Cakes, which meant there would be plenty of après Trail food to get through.
A couple of the early birds went around to the local ‘Spoons, maybe in a hope that as last time they did this they were looking out of the Pub window & spotted Fliptop setting the Trail. However there were two flaws with this plan, A) Fliptop wasn’t the Hare today! B) The Trail wouldn’t pass the view outside of the Pub! Meanwhile Wanktlers was supping away in the Jolly Postie, he would meet up with My Lil’ & Mr X as they walked around from the Manor House (‘Spoons).
On the way along to the Start of the Trail, these three would see the start of the Out Trail, passing the first CHK point as they made their way around to Chez Sis et Fliptop. There wasn’t a bad turnout, no doubt the Confections already laid out on the table were a strong lure! It was fare good enough to tempt Kylie, however there was no sign of Sparky at this palindrome Run.
The Circle was called in the backyard of Chez Sis et Fliptop, where some questioned what looked different in the garden, well, the tree has now gone, which definitely changes the look of it. Fliptop went through the honours of introducing the Pack to the correct Run Number, then as everyone expected him to explain what the Trail would entail, that due to the previous day’s band commitments with Quixote’s Beard, he announced that Slug & Port were the day’s Hares!
Sludge mentioned that the Trail had been set the day before, hopefully it had survived the Saturday afternoon rain? There would be a Held CHK & it was normal Hash markings, there was no mention of any Short Cuts! Then the Hash were ushered out of Maltings Close & on to Green Drift, where Wanktlers, Mr X & My Lil’ had an advantage as they led the way eastward, by the cleared ground where an old bungalow once stood, all that remains on the worked bare earth is the old Well.
At the end of Green Drift the Hash arrived on Kneesworth Street, there the First CHK was found. Wanktlers made out he would check it for Trail by Royston station, fully well knowing the Trail was in the opposite direction. This encouraged Flying Solo to search southward toward the Centre of Royston, but as she suddenly stopped, so Mr X & My Lil’ then began running again in her direction to encourage Flying Solo to continue on by the entrance to Palace Gardens, where the slightly faded arrows were found. These were the gardens to the Palace where James I (VI of Scotland) stayed at on his visits to Royston at the start of his reign.
The Hares were happy to see that Sludge had managed to get by St George’s Nursing Home, as well as that Mr X, My Lil’ & Wanktlers surpassed themselves in passing by Cambridge Wines without stopping! The Trail continued along Kneesworth Street, keeping to the western edge until reaching the junction where it ends on Baldock Street (part of the Icknield Way), here the Trail appeared to vanish.
The lack of markings had the Pack going off in all options, with My Lil’ searching toward the west, while Mr X & Sludge crossed the junction lights to search by the Roy stone.
A photoshoot was called for by Milf, with the Pack around the large stone. Fliptop explained that Royston became prominent as the Icknield Way meets Ermine Street here, the stone has a square socket hole carved out of the top, where the Royse’s Cross was erected [Steady there Pebbledash! – Ed] into the large lump of millstone grit, though Royston has habited in pre-historic times well before the Roman Road was created on an Ancient Briton Track.
Eventually Kylie dawdled up to be included in one shot, before he took his own pics of the Pack gathered around the lump of rock! When the Trail resumed, Mr X went off to the west, no Trail there & so he came back to see the rest were heading along Upper Kings Street, he was joined by Tent Packer who was open his way back from going wrong on the parallel Kings Street to the east.
There are some nice old wattle & daub houses along this stretch to the south, the route rising slightly on its way out to join the A10 on the end with Sun Hill, here a CHK was found. The Trail seemed to be in better condition as it was picked up further up the south-bound on the rising A10 London Road.
It wasn’t far until to the next CHK was discovered, at a point where an alleyway leads off to the west through to the homes around Layston Park, which was checked out by My Lil’ & Flying Solo to no avail. TBT OBE, who was on good form earlier, now pulled up after his leg gave him some gyp.
Arrows were found further southward, with the Pack crossing the entrance to Layston Park, then on to a CHK by the entrance to the Royston Hospital. While Wanktlers carried on up to the south, No Eye Deer checked out on the drive in to the Hospital grounds, which left the RA to speculate if she had caught something in Cyprus, from where she had got back at ‘silly o’clock’ that the morning? It seems not, for she was soon back as “On!” was called on up the green track to the southwest, leading up away between the hedgerows, with the homes to the right & fields to the left, the abodes would end as the route turned to due west & climbed up between the farm land.
Now on the right, near where the end of the track joins Briary Lane is the Wicker Hall reservoir, which is hidden underground, this was where the Held CHK was found. So, it was time to wait for the rest to catch up, with a choice of MAOAM Pin-Balls or Wine Gums to chew upon to while-away the time. TBT OBE, picked up his pace a bit to arrive just before Kylie & Pebbledash did, which heralded the senior Hare to allow the search to resume.
Wanktlers immediate took to Briary Lane as it leads away to the south, while Sludge, My Lil’ & Mr X were keener on the option to head northward, over the ridge & down to Wicker Hall on Royston Heath, it was these three who were called back to see the rest heading away from them.
Catching up & passing Kylie & Pebbledash, then No Eye Deer, TBT OBE & Slug, My Lil’, Sludge & Mr X were now in pursuit of Wanktlers, Flying Solo, Tent Packer, Milf, Fliptop & Teddy as the Hash turned a 90° turn to the west, on the way they passed by a couple of blokes & their young sons out picking Sloes, no doubt the youngsters wouldn’t be able to appreciate the ‘fruits of their labours’ when they are added to make Sloe Gin.
The Next CHK was found at the end of the hedge-in paths where it joins north-south track, here the option of turning northward was the correct one, no one even considered to search southward, mainly as to the north the expanse of Royston Heath sits down below the wooded ridge. Sure enough, the Dust was picked up northward, leading on to the tree-lined ridge overlooking the common, right above what was the Rifle Range at the south of the flat common area.
Through a kissing gate & a CHK was found, the options were to stay with the ridge top to the east, descend down into the valley floor to the northeast, or take to the wooded plateau option slightly to the left, that would gently drop down as it heads away, the latter was the correct option as Dust was found that way.
Mr X had to stop off, once away from civilian dog-walkers, one of whom was walking a ‘Teddy’ look-a-like pooch. As Mr X stopped behind a Tree, he noticed someone was behind him, it was Tent Packer who, worryingly for the RA, was fiddling with his gloves like he was a Customs Office or a Doctor! A sigh of relief from the RA as Tent Packer moved along a bit further & he too stopped to scare the squirrels!
The route would follow the wooded area as it turns through to the west, around hallway along this section of running between the trees another CHK was found. Port stood on the CHK & wasn’t giving any clues away, not even to the RA! [God Lad! – Ed!] So, Wanktlers & My Lil continued westward, the Trail was picked up on the northern option dropping down to the edge of the open area that sits to the southeast of the Golf Course.
A nice trot along the mown grass strip as the Dust led northward, moving ever closer toward the side of one of the Fairways, of course a fairway has to have a Tee & the Pack were soon running virtually on to the Tee, as a patient group of golfers were trying to tee-off, but they had to put this on hold as a steady stream of Hashers & civilians came along right beside them as the footpath was slightly diverted due to it being occupied with parents watching their kids play Rugby.
Away from the Golfers & the Dust took the Hash over to the Car park at the corner of The Heath Sports Centre, Mr X wondered if there was a Beer Stop there, as we have utilized the Bar here on previous occasions, he was to be disappointed. An information sign by the Club House shows the history of the Heath, that ancient Briton Earthworks have been found on it, including the Tumuli & a long Barrow, which all predates the Roman Settlement Again.
No chance of an Ale this time as a normal CHK was found just by the north-western corner of the Sports Centre. Again Port was not giving anything away, even when Mr X asked if it was worth him looking out by the tennis courts, which it was, as Dust was found veering over the heath from the tennis courts to the Baldock Road.
Meanwhile, Sludge, Milf, My Lil’, Flying Solo had all continued out of the club’s drive to the Main road to Baldock, with Sludge turning to the east & eventually he would pick up the Trail, while Mr X & Tent Packer found the correct route.
The final CHK of the Trail would be found along the northern side of the Baldock Road, near to the pathway leading northward. Flying Solo, not having the same local knowledge as Sludge & Mr X, chose to look along the main road, while Sludge chose the green track & it was he who found Dust on the route between the large properties on its way up to Green Drift.
The final stretch of the Trail was to turn right & follow Green Drift, by the Bowls Club & all the way back up to Maltings Close. There the FRBs soon settled in, though it did become a concern that TBT OBE was well off the pace after the rest of the expected knitting circle arrived back.
There were plenty of snacks to start with & compliment the bottles of Ale, before the Hash started on Fliptop’s own version of ‘Nanna’s ‘Magic’ Soup’, (As seen on the Tesco TV advert) which was rather nice, especially when complimented with the bacon & chorizo scones, or the equally scrummy gluten free cheese bread! There would be ample cakes to try & get through, to help things along Sis had placed several games on posters around the room, including a quiz that Wanktlers said he had won, as he knew all the answers!
There was another game of placing your biscuit in the centre of a cup of tea, rather like pin the tail on the donkey, Mr X had a laugh as he deliberately places high up on the wall, well above the poster! Kylie was closer with his hobnob [Steady there Pebbledash! – Ed] while Pebbledash got it almost spot on with her Jammie Dodger! [Yes, that was deliberate for Pebbledash! – Ed] Mr X thought that Grababaldi [Surely Garabaldi? – Ed] biscuits would be more suitable for most of the Hashers, thankfully there was no need to for Ginger Nuts or (Michael Barrymore’s) Chocolate Fingers! Still it was lucky Ewok wasn’t there as everyone commented on the Gluten-Free Fruit Cake being so delicious moist! Mr X preferred the Guinness & cream cheese cupcakes, which really did work well.
The competitive nature that comes out [The Hash is supposed to be non-competitive! – Ed] soon showed, prompting calls for a ‘Games Night’ which Milf was left to work on, Monopoly or squabble [As Mr X called it when played it while growing up in his house hold! – Ed]
Sis must have had a busy day, not only has she been setting out the spread of cakes with help from What Mother Says, she also made sure the Hash knew that she had been to the First CHK no less than three times that morning. Mr X, Wanktlers & My Lil’ had only done the CHK twice!
Down-Downs came around, but as it was a mizzle rain outside, the circle was held in doors, as long as there was no spillage on the light coloured carpet! The Hares were out for setting todays’ Trail, they were joined by Mr X who set the Thursday Trail (Down-Downs were put off on Thursday as there was music on in the Pub).
No Eye Deer was out for getting back from Cyprus at Silly o’clock in the morning & coming to the Hash, she was joined by Tent Packer, who felt a bit ‘loose’ after the Mexican night with a touch of Montezuma’s revenge? Not that anyone else had any issues, TBT OBE even went back………….. to pay for his Beer that had slipped his mind.
Pebbledash told of how she went out to Standon & won a Fancy Dress competition on the Friday after the Mexican, by wearing her Día de Muertos (Day of Dead Outfit & Make-up) from the Run the evening before! The £25 pound winnings were split with £5 going to her daughter for the face painting, & the remaining £20 went in to the MacMillan Charity Fund. Finally the last few departed, after a couple of Electric Engineers knocked to say that the power was going off for a couple of hours!