20th October 2011 – Coneysthorpe to Hovingham
Chris, John, Paul, Keith, Sherlock & Jack Rhoades.
The original plan was to walk from Coneysthorpe to Welburn but it was discovered earlier in the week that the Crown & Cushion no longer opens on mid-week lunchtimes, a familiar story of late. So, we switched the walk from Coneysthorpe to Hovingham after first checking that The Malt Shovel would be open.
Chris can usually be relied upon to give a smooth and safe ride as befits a professional driver of many years standing, so what went wrong today is anyone’s guess….perhaps watching too many re-runs of Top Gear or maybe it was a full moon? In the course of our journey north he went through a red light, was overtaking vehicles at every opportunity whereas normally he’d be content to sit behind them, going round a roundabout on two wheels….well almost, and causing a taxi driver to aggressively blow his horn as Chris squeezed his way around some parked cars in Malton.
The landlord of The Malt Shovel in Hovingham gave us a friendly welcome and while we enjoyed the ambience of his pub all the usual rituals were played out most of which appear to involve paying money out. Another age old FAC ritual is the art of finding something before it is lost and, on this occasion, it was the map which Keith had found before Paul had lost it…….allegedly. It had inadvertently been left outside the pub on one of the tables and under such circumstances it’s quite reasonable to expect that the person finding the item would quickly return to its rightful owner, but this is the FAC and reasonable was not on the agenda. However, hiding it away and then berating the person who mislaid it is a pastime often indulged in by members of the FAC and today it was given full reign by Keith. After quite some time he eventually produced the map and Paul didn’t know whether to be embarrassed (for mislaying it) or relieved (at not having to buy a new one). Don’t tell Bob though?
Not long after the map incident was resolved Jack incurred the wrath of a local farmer. JackNav was out in front and for reasons best known to himself he elected to stray from the footpath and cross over a bit of scrubland and then compounded his errant behaviour by climbing over a farm gate. Unknown to Jack the farmer had spied this heinous crime and he strode purposefully after Jack intent on pointing out the error of his ways. Fortunately, Jack kept a cool head while the farmer made his point and it blew over as quickly as it had begun but we don’t think Jack will be top of his Christmas card list.
As the afternoon wore on Sherlock’s inner plumbing had begun playing a merry melody and, in the end, he had to resort to wandering off amongst the trees and undergrowth to let nature take its course well away from the vulgar gaze of his walking companions. What he didn’t bargain for was a visit from an inquisitive Labrador with a cold nose which quickly brought to an end any thoughts he may have had of treating his arse to a salad……such is life.
Needless to say, Sherlock was first to get changed and even before the rest of us were ready he was gone, along with his passenger Jack, amid apologies for leaving early and with only one thing on his mind. Meanwhile the drive home with Chris was a much more sedate affair with no driving infringements to report. Paul even risked buying some eggs from a farm at Wharram-le-Street confident in the knowledge that they wouldn’t arrive home scrambled.
Original report by Paul Coates
10th October 1996 – Ellerburn to Levisham
Paul, Alf, Bob, Jacko, Craggsy, Dave Hunt, Ray & Barry.
We couldn’t have wished for a better walking day, shirt lap order** in October is a bonus. A bit of a strenuous walk with a couple of good hard climbs which got the blood flowing and the brow sweating.
On arrival at The Horseshoe Inn at Levisham we donned our blueys (blue boot coverings) which got the interest of one of the customers. He asked Bob who we were and he was informed we were brain surgeons plus one anaesthetist on our annual outing.
The usual problem of locating the footpath across the wide-open fields in the Kingthorpe area was encountered. The line of hedgerows that the path used to follow has been removed which meant keeping to the path was a bit of a challenge. We were approached by a farmer but he didn’t give us any hassle even though we’d possibly strayed off route a little. At least we made our presence felt and kept the footpath open.
** shirt lap order was a term often used by Bob Garton. I’m not certain that any of us knew what it meant.
Original report by Jack Fawcett
15th October 1981 – Elm House (Upper Farndale) to Ingleby Greenhow
Bob, Jacko, Chris, Barry & Alf.
Three deer crossed our path in Greenhow Plantation. Barry went up to his knees in mud but managed to extricate himself before a photo could be taken.
Original report by Chris Pickering
Original reports collated & edited by Paul Coates.