It's one of the joys of hareing, those repeated trips to country pubs, as you work out a route through a landscape that you only know via an OS map.
Looking at the map, Lilley seemed an ideal location, nestling as it does between a number of famous trails, the John Bunyan, Icknield and Chiltern Ways pass through or nearby the village and the pub features them on a information board alongside its entrance. As a bonus, the pub served some interesting beers and featured a wood-fire (an item, I predict will become more popular, as the year moves on).
So it was on the hares' third visit to the Lilley Arms, that we circled up outside for the run.
Unusually, the trail was mostly run over bridleways and the hares had seriously considered exploiting this, by laying down the dust by bike – there are only about 650 metres of the trail on a footpath!
Leaving the pub, the trail followed West Road to where it becomes a bridleway (and part of the John Bunyan trail) going northwest towards Wardswood. Skirting the wood we soon came to the point where the short-cutters could branch off leaving the hardy runners to continue their pilgrimage with John Bunyan towards Warden Hill.
Some took advantage of the viewpoint (169m with clear views of the suburbs of North Luton) before returning and taking the footpath to the Chiltern Way. This followed the ridgeline past Whitehill wood (where we rejoined the short-cutters) and Whitehill farm before turning North East to head back into the village between the cricket ground and the children's playing field to the On-INN in the village-hall carpark.
Despite advice from the hares to the contrary, the return to the pub was made via about 200m of the West Street – the only bit of through road on the course.
Although most hashers initially sought shelter in the bar, Catch-IT chose to set up her charity cake-stall in the garden, fending off the pubs freeloading peacocks who showed an unwelcome interest. Subsequently in the circle, Blow Felt was presented with a 150 run award and sundry malefactors and recidivists received their just deserts from the RA.
Catch-IT and Clap Trap
On on to the The Red Lion, Milton Bryan!
SCRIBITORIAL: Well done Catch IT, good hash, appreciated by all, and excellent cake. Interesting commentary on the trail, Clap Trap, but don't forget our customers do like to read about themselves: must mention more hashers! Scribe