.
SOS LOGO

Essex Stragglers Orienteering Society (SOS)

ClubMark
accredited


Home
  Next Event
  Recent Results
  News
 
Events
  Club Fixtures
  Club Coaching
  Club Results
 
The Club
  History
  Members
  Aims
  Mapped Areas
  Permanent Courses
  Champions
  Award winners
  Relay winners
 
Beginners' Guide
  About Orienteering
  The Map
  Skills
  Equipment
  At an Event
  Permanent Courses
  Event Types
 
Members' Area
  Governance
  Organisers' Manual
  Planners' Manual
  Clubmark
  Coaches
 
Newsletter
  Read or Download
 
League
  Scores
  Events
  Rules
  FAQ
 
Membership
  Details
 
Contacts
  Committee
 
Search
  Search this site
 
Schools' League
  ESSOL Rules
  ESSOL Fixtures
  ESSOL Results
 
Regional Website
  EAOA Fixtures
  EAOA Clubs
  EAOA Officials
 
National Website
  Beginners' Guide
  Fixtures
  Results
 
Orienteering Foundation
 
Forum
  Nopesport
 
Essex Stragglers on Facebook
 

 

Newsletter
Volume 20 Number 3
May 2007

Editors: Geraldine Russell and Andrew Cordle


Contents


Editorial - Geraldine Russell

The last month has been busy for some members who entered both the JK in the beautiful Forest of Dean and then the British Championships in South Wales which was a little more rugged to say the least! SOS members were very successful in both events as you will see later.

For those of you reading this on the website, don't forget to come to the Hylands event on 20th May where there will also be coaching afterwards from Steve Cartwright for those wishing to partake.

To keep you all in top form during the summer months Steve Cartwright has organised a couple of training runs/social evenings and also there is the SOS relays which is mainly a fun and friendship event. If you have any friends or relatives who wonder what orienteering is all about then bring them along to the come and try it day on 14th July. Wherever you go or whatever you do, I hope everyone has an enjoyable summer.

Editorial - Andrew Cordle

If you received this newsletter in paper format, you should find a handy fall-out copy of the SOS contacts list. If you received it by email, the contacts list should be a separate attachment. This list is for orienteering and social use by SOS members only (arranging a lift to an event; inviting someone round for tea) and not for selling double glazing or enlargement pills, so if you are reading the newsletter on the web page, you won't find the list. If you want to removed from future copies of the list or if you have an amendment (perhaps you are a family and you use different email addresses), let Geraldine geraldine@russell2.fsnet.co.uk know.

This edition includes a photograph in colour for the first time. Well done that contributor! I hope to see more photos, diagrams, etc. in future editions. And of course, orienteers love to look at maps (we should have the licence with the Ordnance Survey sorted out by the next edition).

When sending material to the editors, please send photos etc. separately from the text (i.e. not included in a Word document), as that makes the newsletter easier to put together. Having said that, all contributions in text files, on CD or floppy disk, or even written on paper are always welcome.

Chairman's Chat - Martin Sellens

The Spring season of major "O" events is now well underway and large contingents of Stragglers were reported, as predicted in my last chat, gambolling through the forest (of Dean) or puffing up erstwhile slag heaps (Pwll Du) at the JK and British Champs respectively. Not a madrigal was to be heard issuing from parched lips. I hope that elsewhere someone might have been moved to report on the JK. As to the British, hearty congratulations to James Lyne and Joanne West for their magnificent podium places (3rd in both cases) in M/W 20E. Although it is invidious to pick out other sterling performances, I hope no one will mind my commenting on John Russell's excellent 10th place in M65. This from a man who resisted the subtle delights of the sport for many years, despite often being abandoned in the car park by svelte better half Geraldine (fixtures secretary and top W60) and daughter Chloe, but is now rejuvenated when clad in the magical Stragglers green. Well done, John!

How did I do? Well 21 minutes to cover the 400m or so between controls 17 and 18 will give you an idea. Still, to borrow an immortal line from the late Pauline Stevens, it was lovely. Many thanks to Jenny Collyer for organising the relay teams for both events. Though none of us did spectacularly well, it is always fun to be in a team despite the extortionate cost of a relatively short run.

What's happening in the smoke free rooms?

Meanwhile, your faithful committee considered the following major issues at out March meeting (selected highlights only).

  • It was reported that Lyn had been chasing Ultrasport for the new club kit. Clearly she must have caught them as the redesigned tops were on display on a variety of different shaped models at recent events. My personal observation is that the clever design and cut has a distinctly slimming effect on the fuller figure. I recommend purchase at the first available opportunity for all size zero and above.
  • A budget of £400 was approved for the Development Committee to fund coaching activities. You will have noticed the excellent work that our coaching team, under the leadership of Steve Cartwright, has been putting in at a variety of events recently. In particular, the team organised an event in Bridge Wood (by the Orwell Crossing) for the "Fit club" being run by an Ipswich newspaper. This was a great success and got lots of local publicity for the Sport. Hopefully both SUFFOC and ourselves might benefit from this exposure. Also congratulations to Dave Birkett who passed his level 2 coaching course at the event at Tiptree Heath in April.
  • The activities of the development committee are probably responsible for a 15% real growth in membership noted by membership secretary Geraldine Russell (better half of famous veteran Orienteer, John; see above).
  • Subject to approval by SUFFOC, it is proposed to open ESSOL (Schools League) to junior orienteers from outside Essex (Straggler's bit) and Suffolk.
  • We also approved the spending of some of the club's healthy bank balance on mapping Danbury Park and some nifty software called Route Gadget. Perhaps Andrew Cordle will report on this so those of us who aren't technically minded and don't have the time or inclination to tinker can take advantage of this, no doubt wonderful, electronic enhancement to our orienteering pleasure.
  • Don't forget, all members are welcome to attend committee meetings to gain first hand insight into the complex and fascinating world of club administration. This will probably be too late to tell you about the meeting of Monday 14th May at the Sellens residence (Somakam, Roman Hill Mersea Rd, Colchester CO2 0BX), but check out the web site for the date of the subsequent meeting. And don't miss the AGM, probably in October sometime. Meanwhile, plan to attend some or all of the Summer Series of local events (see fixtures) and contemplate, if you haven't already, such holiday delights as the Scottish umpteen days or one of the European multi-day events. Be adventurous! Get out more often! Embed your carbon footprint firmly on the forest floor! Happy orienteering. May your map always be properly orientated and your needle always point north.

Captain's Corner - Jenny Collyer

We have just returned from the British Championships in South Wales where we entered seven teams in the Relay Event. Just four weeks earlier and just up the road we had eight teams competing in the JK Relays in the Forest of Dean. Thirty club members ran in one or both of these relays and for some it was their first experience of a major relay event. It was not easy to know which categories to enter and how to mix the teams but I feel I got it right. Everyone appeared to enjoy the experience and I look forward to next year's JK in the south east where we should be able to enter many more teams. I particularly look forward to entering at least one mini relay team with all the up and coming young juniors who are doing so well. The British Championships being in Scotland next year may be a different matter!

Having won the Regional round of the Compass Sport Trophy in March I am hoping you have all written the date of the Final in your diaries. This will take place on Sunday 14th October near Mansfield in Nottinghamshire. The more club members taking part the more chance we will have to win the trophy.

SOS gets two Bronze Medals in the British Championships

Congratulations to James Lyne and Joanne West who both came third.
Emma Johnson, Eleanor West and Alex Birkett all had very good runs as well.
 
M10A10Thomas Birkett28:14
M10B8Alex Birkett50:12
M20E3James Lyne78:58
M45L61Mark Lyne98:35
65David Sanderson99:59
82Dave Birkett125:10
M50L72Clive Tant92:24
M50S39Richard Barker98:49
M55L52Martin Sellens85:36
M55S27David Skinner96:59
M60L68John Collyer101:18
M65L10John Russell65:31
M70L30Jack Isbester86:58
W16A34Ellen Sanderson81:59
W20E3Joanne West92:05
W20L5Emma Johnson119:20
W21L13Daniela Brohm111:30
W21S6Eleanor West67:50
W50L21Hilary Sellens78:15
W60L20Geraldine Russell71:23
27Jenny Collyer78:38

See Julie Laver's Event Report later in this newsletter.

SOS win a Gold and Two Silver Medals at the JK

Congratulations to Ann Roller and Thomas Birkett who came first and second respectively in the combined Days 2 & 3. Also to Jenny Collyer who came second on Day 1 in the Super Vets Women Sprint Race.
 
ClassPlaceNameTime
(Both days added)
Time
1st Day
Time
2nd Day
M10 A2Thomas Birkett40:2520:46(4)19:39(2)
M10 B10Alex Birkett50:2625:50(8)24:36(15)
M20 E13James Lyne147:2550:33(20)96:52(13)
M21 E28Chris Sellens165:2644:57(48)120:29(26)
M40S32Perry Mole169:2676:19(24)93:37(42)
M45L110David Sanderson215:3997:22(116)118:17(116)
120Stephen Cartwright236:14110:20(124)125:54(123)
122Dave Birkett246:30120:12(127)126:18(124)
M50L82Colin West202:1596:37(99)105:38(88)
M55S44David Skinner167:4471:10(44)96:34(46)
M60L68John Collyer163:5878:05(74)85:53(68)
W16A36Ellen Sanderson118:3861:44(44)56:54(35)
W21L28Daniela Brohm197:4893:59(33)103:49(29)
W21S35Nicola Robertson151:1564:28(26)86:47(42)
W35L1Ann Roller130:2566:07(2)64:18(2)
W45L61Wendy Welham206:40110:02(67)96:38(54)
W50L47Susan Carton158:4278:49(55)79:53(45)
W50S32Julia Robertson182:1783:30(32)98:47(33)
W60L10Jenny Collyer108:1056:32(16)51:38(6)
21Geraldine Russell118:1358:27(22)59:46(22)

 
Anne Roller

Anne Roller with her Gold Medal

 
Thomas Birkett

Silver Medal for Thomas Birkett

Thomas Birkett, year 4 at Meadgate Primary School, Chelmsford won silver medal at this years Jan Kjellstrom International Orienteering Festival. The event held in the Forest of Dean over the Easter weekend is Britain's premiere orienteering event attracting up to 3000 competitors. Tom competing in the M10A class found the routes relatively straight forward at yellow standard. The planner used streams, in places, as line features making the courses a little bit more interesting than the normal path running that Tom is used to. It was Toms speed on the second day that gained him time to edge out his rivals and make the difference.

Tom said "I loved the terrain and the features although when following the streams I had to avoid patches of dense undergrowth."

Thomas was very pleased with his result and is looking forward to next years JK which is being held in the south of England. Nice and local so no excuses for not going. Tom moves up an age class next year to M12A so the competition will be greater. In preparation he plans to work harder on his map reading skills over the next year. Hopefully Dad who has just qualified as a level 2 coach will be able to help!

Coaching and Social Jogging - Stephen Cartwright

Coaching on Sunday 20th May 2007, at the Hylands Park, Chelmsford event

Unfortunately Richard Barker has had to cancel due to work commitments so I have stepped in and hope to do an hour from 12 noon as usual on 'Elements of fitness and Running technique'. All ages and abilities welcome although to get an idea of numbers it would be great to know who intends coming. People are of course still welcome to join in on the day.

Social Jogging

As I'm sure some will remember from the newsletter the development committee thought it might be a nice idea to try a friendly chatty jog/running training session once a month.

Our provisional date for May was Thursday 24th with something organised in the Colchester area. This could be a cross country trail type jog or other depending on interest and who would like to come. Times would need to be finalised too. Any suggestions to myself (steve.cart@virgin.net) please before I finalise something. Other clubs have found this sort of thing helpful, some even have weekly running club type training sessions.

Trail Run - Jenny and John Collyer

From the Henny Swan, near Sudbury Wednesday 27th June from 6.0pm onwards
3 courses of about 8, 5 and 2 miles

Henny Swan is located at Henny Street on the minor road to the west (Essex side) of the River Stour between Bures and Sudbury. Grid reference TL880385.

Trail running is good practice for orienteers, though instead of a map and compass a written route description is used. It tests concentration as well as fitness and uses local footpaths. Anyone is welcome to have a go whether running or walking.

Any further information from Jenny or John Collyer on 01787 370947 or email jcollyer48@btinternet.com.

... and that's not all ... (ed.)

The Social Jogging and Trail Run information was also posted to the SOSMembers email group (you can join on the SOS website or contact andrew@cordle.net who will do it for you).

In response, Lyn West wrote

As the idea of chatty jog has been suggested, I thought fellow orienteers might be interested in hashing - no illegal substances involved! Colin and I are regular attenders and some of the hashers come orienteering. A hash fits the bill of a chatty jog (or if you are very keen you can go racing off looking for the trail). Currently we meet at 19.30 on Monday evenings. Next Monday is just up the road from us but I have a development committee meeting at mine at 8.00! The run usually lasts about an hour and then most adjourn to the pub. If you want further information just ask.
May 21, Wooden Fender, Ardleigh
May 28, Bures Car Park
June 04, The Compasses at Pattiswick

and Martin Sellens added

Excellent idea! There are also some Colchester Harriers trail runs coming up (though they are also on Mondays). Here is the current info from their web site.
4th June The Whitehorse Edwardstone (TL950428)
2nd July The Angel Nayland (TL975343)
6th Aug T.B.A.
3rd Sep T.B.A.
All runs are approximately 5 miles and start from 7.00 pm.

ESSOL and Explorer Challenge - Julie Laver

ESSOL

With only two events left on this years ESSOL calendar the latest leaders of their age classes are as follows:
Up to Y6 boysNicolas HarrisonUp to Y6 girlsLucinda Wilkinson
Y7/8 boysMichael ParkY7/8 girlsFlora Mol
Y9/10 boysJames ParkY9/10 girlsHannah Newton
Y11/12/13 boysJames LyneY11/12/13 girlsEllen Sanderson

Barnardiston Preparatory lead the school team table.

Most of the classes however are quite close so the points scored at Hylands Park and Highwoods events will be vital. See web site for details of these events. There will be a presentation of trophies and medals after the Highwoods event and participation certificates will be sent to the schools of all entrants scoring 100 points or more through the season. Please ensure your entry slips for the events are filled in clearly to make collating results easier.

Good luck to all participants.

Explorer Challenge

Congratulations to Nicolas Harrison who has now completed his Explorer Challenge. Well Done!

If there are any Juniors who wish to take part in the Explorer Challenge come to the enquiries desk at SOS events and pick up a log book free of charge. Points are gained for each control found (even if the course is not completed) and certificates and badges awarded for every 25 points up to 100.

Fixtures in East Anglia and Nearby Regions

The information provided below normally consists of Event Date, Region (eg EA = East Anglia), Event Grade and Type (Grade 1 is highest grade, Grade 5 is lowest. Type C is a conventional Cross Country event in which controls must be visited in the sequence listed on the description sheet). Event & Location Names and map reference. Organiser's contact details. Contact details, costs, closing date etc. for Pre-entry when provided. Whether Entry on the Day (EOD) is possible and the surcharge payable. The range of courses offered. The address of a website from which additional information can be obtained. Additional information in plain language.

At Essex Stragglers' events registration normally opens at 1000hrs, starts are from 1030hrs until 1230hrs and courses close at 1430hrs.

May 2007

26th-28th

WM

Springtime in Shropshire Weekend

 

27th

SE

SAX District Event. Ightham, Sevenoaks. TQ580560.

 

C4

Jean Fitzgerald, 01622 686779. jean.fitzgerald@emr.ac.uk £4.50/Free. EPS-SI. Saxons 24 hour infoline on 01303 813344. www.saxons-oc.org

June 2007

3rd

SC

TVOC District Event & SCOA League Event. Great Hampden and Whiteleaf, Princes Risborough. SP827019.

 

C4

Stephen Hudson, 01442 827697. nicksteve.hudson@btinternet.com £7.00/£2.00 + £1.00 Emit hire. EPS-Emit. String course. No dogs. Parking in a field opposite Greenhailey Farm SP 824035. www.tvoc.org.uk

9th-10th

NW

Twin Peak Weekend

 

10th

SE

SO 3 in 1 Event. Oldhouse Warren, Cowdray Forest & Monks Wood, Crawley. TQ297327.

 

O5

Andy Bridge, 01293 412366.Andy.Bridge@dsl.pipex.com £6.50/£3.00 - fees are for two/three events. Just one is £4.50 senior, £2.00 juniors. SO juniors free. No BOF discount. EPS-SI. Three sets of Green, Light Green & Yellow courses. Parking £1.00. Starts 09.45-13.30. All events will use a common car park and assembly area with short walks to/from each start/finish location. SO 24-hr Ansaphone - recorded event information 01903-239186. www.southdowns-orienteers.org.uk

16th-17th

SOA

NATIONAL EVENT & SCOTTISH CHAMPIONSHIPS & UK RELAY LEAGUE

 

17th

EA

SOS District Event & East Anglian Schools Championships. High Woods, Colchester. TM007281.

 

C4

Colin West, 01206 322905. colin@grovehillhouse.wanadoo.co.uk £7.00/£2.00. EPS-SI. White to Blue courses only. www.stragglers.info

23rd-24th

YH

Junior Inter Regional Championships

 

23rd

EA

HAVOC Local Event & HAVOC v CHIG. Langdon Hills Country Park, Basildon. TQ696861.

 

C5

Chris Shaw, 01375 677377. fixtures@orienteering-havoc.co.uk £3.00/£1.00. EPS-SI. Y, G & Blue. Starts 10.30-12.00. www.orienteering-havoc.co.uk

24th

SE

DFOK Frolics Event. Shooters Hill, South East London. TQ438762.

 

C5

Andrew Evans, 020 7620 0389. andrew.evans444@btinternet.com £5.00/£2.00. EPS-SI. www.dfok.co.uk

Jun 29th-Jul 1st

SOA

WOC Selection Races

July 2007

1st

EA

SOS Informal Relays. Danbury Outdoors & CP, Danbury. TL774053.

 

R5

Nancy Powell Davies, 01376 562657. powell.davies@dial.pipex.com £5.00/£2.00. EPS-SI. Yellow, Orange, Light Green. www.stragglers.info

8th

SE

HAVOC Frolics Event. Bedfords Country Park, Romford. TQ520925.

 

C5

Chris Shaw, 01375 677377. fixtures@orienteering-havoc.co.uk £5.00/£2.00. EPS-SI. Yellow, Light Green + Extension. Starts 10.30-12.00. www.orienteering-havoc.co.uk

14th

EA

SOS Come & Try It.  Wivenhoe Park, Colchester.   TM030240

 

C5

Lyn West, 01206 322905. lyn@grovehillhouse.wanadoo.co.uk £2.00/£1.00. EPS-SI. White to Light Green courses only. www.stragglers.info

15th

SE

LOK Local Frolic Event. Alexandra Palace,, London. TQ295896.

 

C5

Neil Brooks, 01494 872578. neilbrooks@msn.com Fees TBA. EPS-SI. www.londonorienteering.co.uk

August 2007

5th-11th

SOA

Spey 2007 - Scottish 6 Days

 

25th-27th

YH

White Rose Weekend

 

Clubmark - Andrew Cordle

Well, we've got the certificate, but what does it mean?

Clubmark is a cross-sport quality accreditation for clubs with junior sections. The national scheme has been in place since 2002 and there are now 2,500 accredited clubs across 25 sports. Most awards are in "mainstream" sports with a strong tradition of junior involvement - cricket, swimming, rugby and gymnastics account for half of all awards - although minority sports are also represented (well done Ipswich Octopush Club!)  Awards are administered by sport National Governing Bodies (like British Orienteering) or by county sports partnerships. 16 English orienteering clubs have been accredited.

The ethos behind Clubmark is that sports clubs should

  • Ensure the well-being of young people whilst in the care of adults, other than their legal parent(s)/carer(s).
  • Enthuse young people to enjoy sport and active recreation to build a healthy and active lifestyle.
  • Enable young people to use their leisure time creatively.
  • Allow young people to optimise their talents and personal ability.
  • Identify and support the development of the most talented young people.

which I am sure we all support. But there are benefits to the club as well -

  • Club development: by encouraging and attracting young members, the club is building a strong future.
  • Increased membership: addressing issues like equity and child protection gives parents confidence in the club.
  • Developing coaches and volunteers: attending  courses develops our skills.
  • Raised profile: we are listed on a national database and in other directories, to help us attract new members.
  • We can access development funding which is restricted to Clubmark accredited clubs
  • Putting in place the policies and practices needed for accreditation has improved the management of the club

Clubmark is an evidence-based qualification, which means we had to collect together a portfolio of documents to show that we meet the standards.  We chose to store all the documents electronically on the club website, so that everyone involved could see how we were doing and which areas we still needed to address.

We had to provide specific evidence for 34 criteria grouped into four headings - Duty of Care and Child Protection,  Coaching and Competition, Sports Equality and Ethics, and Club Management.  Some of the criteria were easy to meet, for instance finding certificates to prove that we had attended some of  the appropriate courses. In other cases it was a matter of booking and attending the courses.   We also had to develop policies and procedures (they are on the Members Resources page of the Website) or adopt or adapt the British Orienteering ones, and get the club Committee to approve the changes.  We (you, the membership) had to change our constitution to explicitly state a couple of things. We had to improve our documentation and record keeping.  Finally Chairman Martin had to sign a document to certify that we actually do what we say we do.   

The process of building the portfolio took about 15 months in the end.  If the Development Committee has abandoned their jobs and families we could have done it much quicker.   When it was time to submit the portfolio, we simply sent the assessor the password to the file and she was able to review the documents online.

Now all we have to do is review the portfolio from time to time (I'll be suggesting to the Development Committee that we look at it each 6 months) and keep it up to date.  Then in 2011 we will have to be assessed all over again!

Spring into Summer - Stephen Cartwright

A couple of years ago SUFFOC (alias Perry Mole) ran an introductory Orienteering session for a group of people organised by the Ipswich Evening Star newspaper, which resulted in a double spread in the paper and obviously marvellous advertising for the sport. This year SUFFOC (and Perry Mole) were too busy to be involved in the planning so SOS took it on for SUFFOC and for "Orienteering".

The group numbered 14 including 2 reporters and they were there to try us out and see if they would consider taking up orienteering as a fitness activity - one of ten different activities that they would try during the "Spring into Summer" programme. They were of mixed sex, and age range twenties to sixty.

Initially the thought was to copy Perry's 2 hour session from 2 years ago, but then on speaking with the paper it was realised that most of the participants were a little unfit so it seemed best to calm Perry down a bit and encourage some walking!

I went for an overview - Various introductory bits, a short Yellow, a Trail "O" and a 30 minute score course. Obviously it was nice to have plenty of help from the Stragglers, yet great that Neil Carter from SUFFOC was able to be there too.

The scenery was quite something, a contoured section of woodland beside the Orwell river, the sun shone and it really was a wonderful day. Depending where you were it was bluebells, trees and foliage or views over and along the river with its boats and the marvellous Orwell Bridge. Everyone seemed to love it.

People got round the Yellow okay (whether they used the compass or not), and did well on the Trail "O" and score. One of the groups got all six right on the Trail "O" and were obviously delighted. Perry ran round the score in 18:47. I didn't think he was that old - but apparently he even helped with the original Barnardiston map.

Some of the punters decided that they were glad that they had the choice of walking when their brains were engaged yet some ran, and most I think were glad to be outside in the woods. A pair of ladies even saw a grass snake and vole. In terms of the orienteering a few may give it a go - so good news.

We sent them home with a goody bag of bits. A Rendlesham permanent course map, a flyer for the SOS Summer Series, some British Orienteering leaflets and a fruit bar. Again they seemed gratefully received. Strangely few sampled the orange squash - apparently they prefer beer !

Great write up in the paper with colour photos. A pdf version of the article is available on the SUFFOC website http://www.pdl.demon.co.uk/pics/Evening%20Star%20010507-1.pdf and http://www.pdl.demon.co.uk/pics/Evening%20Star%20010507-2.pdf.

Heard in the Forest - Jack Isbester

An M70 from SOS was trundling along a narrow footpath in the Forest of Dean towards the end of JK Day 3 when behind him he heard a young woman's voice exclaiming "Run faster!"

Only when he heard another young woman's voice asking, "Is that how you would speak to your own Dad?" did he realise that the words had been addressed at him and, as two Irish W20s ran past he quickened his pace, encouraged to realise that he looked like a Dad rather than a Grandad, from behind at least.

Event Report - British Orienteering Championships - Julie Laver

As a family we have been attending various local and regional events around Essex and Suffolk for a number of years now so this year we decided to pluck up the courage and head for the BOC in South Wales. We decided the first day might be a bit serious for our not too competitive style so with encouragement from Jenny Collier we put our names down for the relays on the Sunday.

As usual we were not very organised so finding a campsite was left to the last minute but after much phoning around and peering at road maps we came across an available pitch. So all was set and as we had committed to the team events it was hard to chicken out we duly set off for Wales on Saturday morning. After an uneventful journey we found the campsite easily, pitched our tent then went to explore the area and find out where we were supposed to be in the morning. We found the town of Blaenavon, and after some driving around the assembly area. After a walk about near Keepers Lake to get a feel for the area we headed back to the tent for a good nights sleep.

Sunday morning dawned dry but windy as we headed up the hill to the starting area. Having had a peek at the previous days map we were all a little apprehensive as the terrain was decidedly more lumpy than we were used to. We also had a crash course in pictorial control descriptions followed by an explanation of how an orienteering relay works. Thanks to the rest of the Club members present for guiding us through.

The M14 team were first away - Thomas, Alex and Rhiannon.

Alex - When I first saw the map, I went ‘woaa!’ when I saw how close the contours were. However I found by navigating Mr Bean style (straight line) I soon got the hang of it and thoroughly enjoyed myself.

Rhiannon - The terrain was very different, there were no trees it was all open ground. There was a lot of heather, long grass marsh and hills. I fell over several times trying to run across the many knolls and holes hidden under the vegetation.

I hadn’t done many Orange standard courses before and had not done contour features but I soon learnt!

James Lyne and I were the Mixed Ad Hoc – a very suitable title. Due to two heroic runs from James we did OK, even if we were recorded as non competitive, despite my lack of athleticism.

We all had a great time and the support of the club members made our first national event experience less daunting. There cannot be many sports which are so accessible to such a wide range of ages and abilities at the same event. I am now encouraged to become a bit more adventurous in the events we choose to enter so look out Britain – here we come!

The History of SOS - An East Anglian Perspective - Andrew Cordle

I'm looking after an archive of early editions of Points East (I don't know why), so I thought it might be a good idea to continue the series on the history of the club by looking through the early editions.

Chapter 1

The first edition doesn't bear a date, but from the context must have been published at the end of 1972 or start of 1973. The previous year seems to have been a busy one for the development of the sport in East Anglia, with Norwich and Suffolk clubs having been formed, and BOF recognising EA as an orienteering region and loaning EAOA £50 to get itself started.

Derek Keeble is listed as the only contact for Essex Stragglers, while the bigger clubs (Chigwell, Norfolk, and Suffolk) were already properly constituted with a Chairman, Secretary, and Treasurer. Hally Hardie is listed as WAOC's only contact - they were planning an Inaugural Meeting in January 1973 and their first event a month later.

Derek was also listed as the Organiser of the Stragglers' Open Event in Friday Woods on January 28th 1973 - the map he drew for the event was in the January Newsletter (Volume 20 No. 1).
 

Car sticker, observed at the Tangham Farm event "Orienteering - thort spought".

Chapter 2

Derek Keeble's Friday Woods event had attracted a good turnout, Wivenhoe YC, and Hedingham Guides being among the local groups represented. J. (presumably John) Dixon of Essex ACF, has the fastest time of the M43s on the Short (3.5 km) course.
 

... As most of you know, the Croxton Heath event was blessed by glorious weather; although there was a hard frost, the sun shone all day and there was barely a breath of wind. Nevertheless, after only two hours at registration, I was literally stiff with cold, has great difficulty standing up straight, and could scarcely hold a pen. This made me realize just how much our lady helpers have to suffer, especially in inclement weather. I would also add that, with a long queue waiting at the table, it was no easy matter trying to keep a calm head and steady hand!

So, those of you who expect the results to be on the board five minutes after you finish, remember its' not all honey sitting in the tents - and, if anybody can spare even half an hour to help, please let someone know. ...

Chapter 3

In Edition No. 3, the EAOA fixtures secretary proposed a structure whereby each club held three events a year and there would be one event in the region a month - Essex was provisionally allocated April, August and December.

To avoid difficulties at event registration, a system of club abbreviations had been agreed - NOR, WAOC, etc. and, of course, for Essex Stragglers - ESX!

The next event in Essex was to be at Danbury Common, again organised by Derek Keeble, but listed as a Suffolk O. C. event. The grid reference given was for the Lakes car park at the Country Park.
 

From the BOF annual report ... membership for 1972 was 2,051 members, 286 families, and 178 groups ... number of events held 356 ...

Chapter 4

... will be in the next newsletter. Pauline Stevens gets lost! Shock horror!

 


Woodland Trust Logo
Essex Stragglers support the Woodland Trust and its objectives
Sport England Lottery logo logo
Essex Stragglers' development activities are supported by Sport England

You are visitor number to www.stragglers.info. Feedback and comments to webmaster@stragglers.info, please.
Mapping based on Ordnance Survey on this site reproduced by permission of Ordnance Survey on behalf of The Controller of Her Majesty's Stationery Office. ©Crown copyright. All rights reserved. Licence number 100047430.
Cookie Policy: This website uses cookies only to determine the number of unique visitors. No personal information is stored, and the cookie is retained for two hours only.

.