Hash 489 – Barleycorn @ Collingbourne Kingston

Date Hare Scribe
15 May 2016 Brian Brian


It is unusual for the hare of a hash to write the mag but on this occasion I have decided to do just that. The reason being that this particular hash, the 489th, was special as it fell upon the 75th birthday of the founder of our club Mr Michael Fisher, known amongst hashers as Navy Mike because he always wears dark blue clothes…….No he doesn’t …it’s because he served as an officer in the Royal Navy for 27 years before becoming a solicitor and, more importantly, starting the Kennet Valley Hash House Harriers.

I quote the following paragraph from the KVH3 website, written by ex-GOM Mike.

On Sunday 1 March 1998 we met up at The Bell in Ramsbury, together with a vast number of other runners, mostly from the Churn Valley Hash. Not only did Mike lay the trail, he also wrote the hash mag, made all the speeches, toasting everyone including himself. He also announced that the Kennet Valley Hash was now formally in existence with himself in charge and that Hashes would henceforth occur on every alternate Sunday morning at 11am precisely – and so they have.

To celebrate this occasion I was requested by Mike’s wife Annie to make the hash from The Barleycorn Inn at Collingbourne Kingston, as on the evening prior she was taking him for dinner and overnight stay in the village. Apparently Mike’s maternal grandmother came from there. Her maiden name was ‘May’ as were many of the farming community at that time. In fact there is a book called Collingbourne Kingston: a photographic view 1900-1950s / by Mary May.

489 - 1Anyway to the hash itself. The day turned out (thankfully) to be a warm sunny one. I had planned the routes so that halfway round the runners and walkers would meet so that we could all have a drink (non-alcoholic) and a piece of cake. Annie had dropped off the goodies to me the day before. It worked out well as the walkers were the first to arrive and so Annie could start cutting the cakes.

Five minutes later the runners arrived and 489 - 2again fortunately Mike was at the rear. We were able to give him a rousing cheer and allowing to pass under a guard of honour as all hashers formed a line of two with arms raised and hands joined. So for fifteen minutes or so we toasted Mike’s birthday and I took photographs before I sent them off again.



489 - 3

Arriving back at the pub we were all able to sit out in the garden in the sun. The apres hashes are always fun but this one was perhaps a bit special and everyone was in a buoyant 489 - 4and talkative mood. There were too many to mention all but it was especially good to see Katrina after so long and the Maber-Jones family. You can see all the photos I took on the day at www.brianlovell.co.uk.

Finally a personal tribute to Mike and Annie. Mike is the best of men and I thank him sincerely for forming the KVH3 which has been an important part of my life for the last seventeen years now. And to both of them for being such very good friends. To both of you ON ON.

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3 Responses to Hash 489 – Barleycorn @ Collingbourne Kingston

  1. Mike says:

    I have just got back from walking in the Lake District and read Brian’s warm hearted and beautifully written hashmag. I was moved almost to tears by everybody’s warmth and kindness and good wishes on the hash – and even more moved when I read Brian’s mag. Thank you all for making my birthday so memorably happy. I am immensely proud to be part of (and had a hand in creating) KVH3 – a hash that is so full of genuinely lovely people.

  2. Kathy says:

    Fab photo of Mike emerging from the Guard of Honour. Kathy

  3. Keith says:

    It was a lovely day and most enjoyable and you have recounted it really well, Brian.

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