One of the few benefits of an orienteering calendar with hardly any events in was that at very short notice we were able to postpone the Agglestone event as Storm Alex approached, and re-schedule it the following week. Thankfully we swapped rain and wind for beautiful Purbeck sunshine and were able to show off one of our premier areas to those orienteering hungry followers who ventured from afar down to Wessex. We are very lucky to have access to the Purbeck heaths and extremely lucky to have the support of the local National Trust wardens who allowed us to stage this event.
However, these events don’t just happen. We only decided to tentatively ask NT for permission at the end of August. We knew that NT were ok with access from October through to end of February as we had already made enquiries for 2022. Julie used her Jedi powers and not only was access given happily, but she also managed to summon a willing planner, Roger and an enthusiastic and diligent controller, Linda (from WIM). Without the three of them, and permission from Burnbake campsite, the event would not have happened. Three cheers for all of them.
So, with only four weeks to plan courses, update the map (thanks Bill), we also decided to run our first SIAC-enabled event. James masterminded the entries and the closing, re-opening, and refunds through Fabian4 (thanks James).
To the day itself, unfortunately some of the team couldn’t make the newly arranged day, but everyone who was able, attended and helped out, even some who didn’t run. We are not a large club, but we are a dedicated and well-oiled machine when it comes to putting on an event. It is a great credit to everyone who spent many hours in the campsite or on the heath ensuring that the day went smoothly and that everyone had a good time. We also had some really good and determined performances.
The terrain was tough, but Agglestone has some fantastic heather hills, intricate contour detail and a network of uncrossable bogs, so it was always going to be a challenge navigationally and physically. The courses used the area well and provided a long-awaited challenge for everyone. Wasn’t it just great to be back out with (socially-distanced) orienteers in the countryside. Something we have all missed. Julie has received many letters of thanks from orienteers from other clubs. In the current climate people certainly appreciated the effort, and it is equally gratifying that orienteers take the time to express their thanks. Positive feedback is always welcomed.
We move on now to the first Wessex Region Night League event at Upton next Monday. Most people will have entered already but there will be some additional maps on the night. It is not a normal night event, so please read the flyer. Thanks to Alan B for organising and planning.
After that, there is the second event organised by BADO at Beggarswood. For this you will have to use RaceSignUp. Entries open on 19th October, so don’t miss out. These night events will continue through the winter. There are few options for orienteering at weekend so make the most of the opportunities.