Date =                            9th Feb 2020

Run Number =            1898    

Venue =                        The Brockley Barge/ Brockley Brewery

Location =                    Brockley

Hare/s =                        Mr X

Beer =                           Brockley Brewery Porter, Session, Red, Winter; Windsor Old Star & many more in Spoons

Runners =                    2                                                

Virgins =                       0

Visitors =                      39 + F.U.K Full Moon H3; London H3; OCH3; M*A*S*H

Newies =                       0

Après =                          0

Hounds =                      1

Total =                          43

Membership =             Paying our respects to our founder!                                


            Storm Ciara threw her best at the British Isles this weekend, but it wasn’t really noticeable until later on in the morning in Herts, no doubt Mount Ware was the exception?  With it being perched up at an altitude where the atmosphere is very thin?  Perhaps that was enough of an excuse for some not to even try & venture out, but at least two from H4 who were prepared to brave the weather, cocking a snoop at Storm Ciara & the Train issues to make it to Brockley.  The fast service down was delayed due to an object getting stuck in the overhead power lines, [Probably Fliptop’s Hot Air balloon? – Ed] but no doubt we’ll hear all the excuses at the Little Green Dragon [Perhaps not, as Storm Dennis is on his way for that weekend! – Ed]

Upon his arrival Mr X went off to check if the Trail was still intact, which he had laid the day & it was still there, albeit now in the form of blobs of dough, which will alleviate any rat poison scares from local dog walkers on Social Media!  With Dust Dough still visible, all the Hare had to do now was change the route slightly for ‘elf & safety’ reasons, a section of the Trail would now be out of bounds due to the high winds.  Fortunately he had been pre-warned about this by the good folk of the Brockley Society

            Mr X returned to find that Digger & Fergie were telling tale of how they had managed to make it along a blustery A13 from Grays, then Tops & Windsock arrived after their journey all the way from Southend-on-sea, which is a lot further out.  Sadly the rest of hashers from Essex H3 who were due to turn out, remained in their burrows only to send on their apologies of not making this Memorial Trail in an email to the Hare. 

Legolas arrived, Tops seemed to recall her face from somewhere, so a gentle reminder that it was the Friday 13th Part 48 with the December Full Moon Trail in Potters Bar.  Tops then questioned why she hadn’t marked Legolas down on the Full Moon Vindaloo list?  That oversight was soon efficiently amended there & then.  Tops was then turned collecting the F.U.K Full Moon H3 subs, she was so efficient & it coincided with Crystal Balls & Hannaballs, then Basher coming through the door & intercepted the two before they made it to the Bar!

The Pack slowly gathered at the Brockley Barge, with Pope & Bo Bo being the first LH3 Hashers through the doors, while other hung around outside, which did make the Hare wonder as they’d be out facing the wind & mizzle later on for a lot longer & the Brockley Barge is one of the best ‘Spoons around.

Time for the Hare to enjoy an excellent Twickenham Winter Star Ale, thanks to Testiculator, before setting off to the Brockley Brewery which was opening at midday for the Hash, there bags would be stored while the Pack were out on Trail.  After a stagger of the few hundred yards following P-2 Arrows, which puzzled some! [P-arrows to P1 = Pub1, P2-arrows to P2 = Pub 2 (or the Brewery) – Ed] everyone made it to the Brewery.

With the mind taxing Krypton Factor puzzle like section of the Trail out of the way, the Pack entered the Brockley Brewery to discover a lot more Hashers, including American Ball Sucker, Wouldn’t Chew, Sleazy, 2 Fingers Max, as well as Sid & Linda from M*A*S*H were already ensconced within the warm brewery.  With Train delays now a reality, the start was held off until 12:40Hrs, time for a nice pint of the Brockley Porter! 

Finally time was up, Windsock had bellowed out ‘Five minutes Warning’ well after the last train should have arrived & so the Circle was called inside the Brewery.  The Pack were informed by the Hare that the Trail was set the day before, Trail was still there in a doughy consistency, importantly there had been a change of plan as the Trail would no longer go the Gispert Family Memorial, since the Council had closed the Brockley & Ladywell Cemetery for safety reasons. 

There was going to be a Beer Stop, this would be back at the Brockley Barge, for Mr X wanted a photo of the Hash in a group to send to the Brockley Society, who are kindly publishing an article on ASI Gispert in their next month’s Newsletter.  Then the Hare mentioned that the CHKs were all ‘Full Moon CHKs’, for which Mr X had to draw one out side of the Brewery when one of the Pack didn’t know what a Full Moon looked like. 

Once Mr X mentioned that there would be a collection after the Trail for the Australian Wildlife Fire Rescue, the Pack were invited outside, where he drew a butt shaped CHK on the pavement, which annoyed My Lil’ who has a dislike of CHKs directly outside the venue!  Suddenly it all fell in to place as an “Oh!  They look like bottoms!” was heard from Juices Flowing. 

Then, without further ado, the Pack ran away from the Brewery to go around by the corner of the local nursery, making off away from the Brockley Social Club to cross by a petrol station on the corner & run out on to the Brockley Road.  The Trail would now make its way over the series of Pedestrian crossings on the junction to head over toward St Andrew’s Church with its distinct spire.

Taking a 45 degree turn on to the start of Breakspears Road to the northeast.  Dust was still pretty obvious on the trunks of the trees lining the suburban street.  The Pack skip the entrance to a side road & crossed over to continue up Breakspears Road, then over Harelefield Road & on to a Held CHK opposite the red pillar-box.

Some questioned why the Pack had stopped so soon?  The answer was revealed, the Hare wanted a picture of the Pack outside of No.80, with its blue door hidden behind the overgrown trees & bushes, as this is the Birth place of ASI Gispert.  Chi Su caught up & now had a chance to try out his new Camera, then he shocked the on looking Pack as he handed it over to Spare Rib to take another shot with Chi Su in the frame! [What, after the last London Trail you’d though Chi Su would have learnt with Spare Rib taking somewhat obscure angled shots? – Ed]

On again, which had already been found by one of the London Hashers who hadn’t held the CHK, but who at least come back to the stop.  As the Pack headed off down the south-eastern leg of Hare Field to cross over Tressilllian Road to find the next CHK, Spare Rib broke off to head back to the Brockley Barge, he was not alone as Banana Bender, Iron Lady, Windsock & Tops would soon be returning there as well.

 Back on the Trail, Scrumpy went wrong down Crescent Way, while the Trail was picked up sou-sou-westward to the corner with Hilly Fields Crescent, then an arrow directed the way along to the east where the path was littered with windfall twigs & small branches to reach a CHK on the junction where Tywhitt Road joins the crescent.

The Pack would now head out around the edge of Hilly Fields Park, an area that was given to the public to enjoy from 1896 & encourage a healthy life-style, which saw the Hash running up by the side of the Francis Drake Bowls Club [I thought he played bowls on Plymouth Hoe? – Ed]

Octavia Hill, one of the three founder members of the National Trust, who campaigned for open spaces for London’s poor.  When plans were announced to build over Hilly Fields, Octavia Hill was instrumental in helping local people set up a campaign to raise the funds to save the land as a public park.  As a direct result of the campaign, Hilly Fields was purchased by the London County Council with substantial donations from a number of sympathetic charities & City companies.  Part of the site had been used for brickmaking and this area was levelled with the swampy sections being drained to remove any decent Shiggy from the area!  On 16th May 1896, Hilly Fields was dedicated to the public.

Anyhow, this area was more exposed, the name Hilly Fields may be a good indicator to this.  The gusty wind could be felt as the Keenies like Knickers, Loopy Lou, Randy Pandy, Woof Woof Woof, Kanye, Legolas, Hannahballs, Crystal Balls & Ryde made their the way around the bottom of the hill, more small bits of fallen tree to be avoided as trip hazards on a gentle rise up from a fork in the tarmac path, with this southwestern branch of the path being marked with an arrow to lead under a couple of the larger creaking tree branches, before dropping down a short side path to emerge out on to Vicars Hill.

Further back at the CHK before the park & the Hare marked a Short Cut straight up by the central tarmac path to the summit of the hill, where a small café sits, one that looks very much similar to the that in the advert where a couple sit watching the dogs being walked & the pick out the different breeds like ‘a cockapoo’ for a famous insurance company.

Meanwhile the FRBs were led over the crossing on Vicars Hill to be drop away to the north, then turning to the right where the Trail led up Shell Road, no fallen bits of trees to really worry about on these urban streets.  It would really be noticeably different on this section of Trail, with parts having the Pack run into the strong gusts, where Pope soon found himself at more of a disadvantage then the others, then there were sheltered sections, then the opposite to running into the wind which was over-compensated by being pushed along at a fair rate of knots when the Trail changed direction to have the wind at the Packs backs’.

 The FRBs started a loop turning right on Brookbank for a hundred yards, then southward down Ermine Road on a parallel route all the way back down on to Vicars Hill where a CHK was found on the junction.  This was run pretty quickly by the likes Woof Woof Woof, Knickers, Loopy Lou, Ryde & Smartarse.  Straight across the road was another entrance to Hilly Fields Park, just beyond the barrier to this the Hash found chalked upon the tarmac path the words ‘SNAKE’ with an arrow pointing to a large fake python curled up by pile of logs that were described as an insect home. 

The Trail was picked up off of this section of tarmac path, taking to a Shiggy route under the few trees along the southern end of the park, this was slippery underfoot & so slowed some up as the desire-line ran close to the back gardens of Veda Road then on to a CHK that was situated upon an old steel drain cover on the end of the open green space.  By this point of the Run the likes of White Trash, Mick Mack & the SCBs had been through & the CHK was already marked through.

Over by the Hilly Fields Stone Circle, a mock henge sat upon the very top of the park.  The stone circle was adopted by the Brockley Society as a Millennium project, with the granite stones hewn from Mount Strouie in Scotland being set up in a Circle on the morning of the Spring Equinox of 2000.  It acts as a giant sun-dial & focal point, as London’s only stone circle, it is dedicated to Brockley’s Parton Saint Norbert! [There is a Norbert Park on the other side of the railway line! – Ed] apparently he’s the Patron Saint of expectant Mothers, Childbirth & is traditionally invoked by married couples who wish to conceive.

The Trail was picked up around behind the stones, then off down the bank to an access road by the tennis, basketball courts & the kids play area by the Montage Theatre Arts drama school, situated on the corner of the crossroads of footpaths was another CHK.  Here the winds could be felt at their strongest, being in this elevated position, which makes this an idea place for the Trig Point.

Down by the edge of the Arts School Dust was found on the row of established trees, it was a steep decent to the south on an exposed side of the park with the fewest trees, one of which had been cut up & Dust marked on the fallen trunk.  The Hash come down to the pelican crossing on Adelaide Avenue. 

Once across the road was a CHK point, from where the pack were led off a few yards to an alleyway of St Cyprian’s Path, who was a Pagan who converted to Christianity & apparently the Patron Saint of Necromancers! Passing down between the Prendergast School & a row of homes where the alleyway came out on to Ivy Road, where a CHK was found.  It was at this point in the Trail that the weather became worse as rain turned from mizzle to full on pelting down cats & dogs!

On the southern side of the old lane was the old wall to the Brockley & Ladywell cemetery, with this now being out of bounds for the Hash, the Trail was amended to follow Ivy road’s serpentine like start of turn to an arcing route away to the northeast, then eastward to re-join the Brockley Road, turning south-westward to head around by the main cemetery gatehouse & closed wrought-iron gates, with health & safety notices pinned to them

Woof Woof Woof was first to catch up with the SCBs along by front of the cemetery, where along by the bus shelter toward the south-eastern corner of the cemetery was a Held CHK, this regroup allowed the pack to see the Angel with a Black Cross behind her & this is the Gispert Family Memorial.  Unfortunately the dedication to 2nd Lt ASI Gispert is on the opposite side, but at least the Hash know where it is. 

Mr X began to explain the story & mentioned the Japanese invasion of Malaysia in 1941, but Thunderthighs went straight in to shout out it was “1942!” [FAKE NEWS! – Ed], Mr X wasn’t going to argue, as Thunderthighs was thinking of when ASI Gispert was Killed while the Japanese were still advancing down through Malaya to Singapore, which the Hare was leading up to, but never mind.

Mr X also mentioned that interestingly on the memorial to this family of Spanish migrants is that his elder Brother died in 1915 with the sinking of HMS Monitor off of the Palestinian coast, & below ASI Gisperts is one for his younger brother who was assassinated in Manilla.

With the rain becoming even heavier, Mr X had removed his glasses & as they are only for distance only they were no good covered in rain, he had hung them from the front of his sweat-shirt, except Thunderthighs thought that these would get broken & she wanted to try to move them, it took a while to explain to her that they wouldn’t break as they have flexible frames!

The Hare reassured those who were getting a little tired of being soaked that there would now be a short cut, while the hardier, including Knickers, Woof Woof Woof, even Chi Su still wanted to continue to do the rest of the Trail.  The whole of the Pack left the bus shelter on the Brockley road to head down to the zebra crossing to the west side of the street.  The FRBs continued down to cross over the bridge that the railway runs beneath in serving Crofton Park Station, the Keenies passed by the Rivoli Ballroom, a place where you can salsa away doing your best Kate Adie [TV’s Mike Bushell’s Hash name! – Ed]

Meanwhile the Short Cut was marked north-westward up Beecroft Road, with Mick Mack & White Trash passing by the local Primary Scholl & then onto Dalrymple Road, the FRBs would reach this part only after they had completed a loop which started with a run on by the parade of shops before talking a right to head north-westward up Buckthorne Road, at the end of which a CHK was found, with dead-ends to the north, the only option left was to turn left & head away to the south where the Trail led down to a crossroads, where another CHK was found. 

On the dead-end section of Eddystone Road, where the local British Legion sits, is a footpath bridge over the railway, this obvious route was the correct choice as it led on over to Brockley Mews, where the Honor Oak cemetery can be found, this too was closed.  The Trail would lead the FRBs around by the blocks of flats that sit on Turnham Road, heading northward until reaching a right turn off to the Local NHS centre.

Now the Trail took to a south-eastward path over another footbridge spanning the railway, this would bring the FRBs out on to Dalrymple Road, where the Trail was marked through from when the SCBs had just passed through on to Howson Road, heading northbound along these commuter town terraced housed, passing by St Mary’s Roman Catholic Church.

It was a straight run through the suburban street to pass through a traffic restriction barrier, no doubt preventing this being a rat-run, as the Pack ran by what was the former Police Station, with its descriptive title carved deep into the sandstone frontage, whoever the door didn’t look so welcoming as it had a large ‘Hazmat’ sign on it! 

Anyhow, the Hash followed the road through a slight change of direction for a few degrees to the east, then at the cross roads with Foxberry Road, a sharp left had to be taken & no less than three arrows pointed the way to the elbow in the road, turning from westward to head northward & back up to the Brockley Barge for a Beer Stop.

The Pub derives its name from the fact that the Railway line stand on what was once the ‘Grand Surrey Canal’ founded under an 1801 Act of parliament.  Running 9 miles from Croydon through to New Cross, the canal was never a success, closing in 1836, the first Act of Parliament canal ever to do so!  Small sections of the former water way do exist, but much of the alignment was used by the London & Croydon Railway Company, which had bought the canal for £40,250, for a section of railway between London Bridge & West Croydon station, that latter sits on the site of the canal basin.

Now, some were still confused as to why the Trail going to the Brockley Barge & not straight back to the Brewery where the bags were, well once settled in with a Pint, Mr X produced a picture frame & placed it upon its front for the Pack to sign the back, this already had a dedication to Cesar & the Brockley Barge. 

With the back signed by all present, pictures taken as the Hash could view the front, which was revealed to be the History of ASI Gispert ‘G’, the Hash founder with his connection to Brockley, the origins of the Hash House Harriers & sadly his death out in Singapore during the Japanese invasion of 1942.

The Pack now had to wait for the Landlord, Cesar to arrive.  Some didn’t hang around & wanted to get out of their wet clothes once they had drunk up.  Fortunately Cesar’s delay wasn’t too long after 14:00Hrs.  Upon his arrival Mr X introduced Cesar as the ‘main man’ to the remaining Pack.  Mr X presented the framed story of this little bit of local History close to our hearts.  Hands were shaken, pictures taken & Cesar took charge of the framed story which is going to be mounted on one of the Pub’s pillars, so the Hash signatures with their mother Hashes on the back will now be like a Hash Time Capsule on the Pub Wall. 

Mr X went to meet Cesar’s family, which was an honour, but being fairly young they were glued to their mobiles, except the youngest who seemed interested in the pictures.  Mr X was shown where the frame will hopefully reside, on a pillar that can be seen from both of the two side entrance.  Cesar is a splendid landlord, as Mr X’s earlier attempts at contact ‘Spoons about having the Gispert Story put up in the Pub just got moved up to another department.  Six months on he heard nothing, but Cesar has stepped up to help us out.  All of this is to try & raise ASI Gispert’s profile in the area of his birth.

The remaining Hash supped up & returned to the Brewery, where Mr X heard the words that no Hasher wants to hear, it was discovered that they had “Run out of Beer!”  We kid you not, the Real Ale had all been drunk & the staff didn’t know how to change the barrels!  So, the Pack had to make do with the craft or bottle versions of the Beers, luckily we are flexible like that!  Spare Rib would make sure Mr X was punished for this when it came to the Circle.

Time to get changed & Scrumpy decided to be mum, showing Ryde & Mr X how to put Socks on, as the old Århus ‘Sunday Socks’ don’t have much give in the at all [Absolutely none! – Ed].  When it came to the Circle there was no option but to have this inside as A) it was still blowing a hoolie out there & B) we didn’t want to upset the neighbours

Spare Rib started things off of course with the Hare, for at the start of the Trail there was no mention of what Run Number it was for London Hash [2518 in case you were interested? – Ed] & to a chorus of Sh*tty Trail Mr X dispatched his Down-Down, some may have thought that the proceedings were going to turn in to ‘Pick on Mr X day’ as Spare Rib had lost property, which was Mr X’s Herts Beenie lost a while back now!  Then there was the Texas connection with “If one Texan Drinks All Texans Drink!” of course who could forget “Couldn’t organise a piss-up in a brewery!” when the Ale temporarily ran out!

Of course with three RA’s there were more than enough Down-Downs & too many to recall what they were awarded to the miscreants for, since this Scribe had been plied with enough drink by is point!  Those that he could recall were LH3 GM, Chi Su, for not introducing the Pack to their 2518 Run Number; Digger well - being Digger, Wouldn’t Chew, the Newbies of Sid & Linda then things all blurred in to one!