SARS v HFRC Foxhunt August 16th 1987

It was a beautiful day for a foxhunt, a light breeze to fan the fevered brow and plenty of sunshine.

My daughter Melanie came along ‘for the ride’, (she didn’t realise that she was going to ho the navigator as well!).

Due to a late start, we went straight to Standard Hill at Ninfield with only 30 seconds to spare and had to push Frank G4F’EF out of his favourite spot. He took one look at the switched dipoles. “Does  that thing interfere?” he asked. “Of course not!” I replied, switching it on.

At 1400 dipoles dithered, HP9s hovcred and ZL Specials, swung, but not a murmur. The silence held for as long as it takes to bang the receiver, check the channel and change the aerial, then:- “Did you hear anything”…”No!, nothing here and I’m on top of xxxx hill!”, etc, etc.

At 1405 a very pregnant one minute’s silence was shattered by “Sod this I’m going home!, it’s not good enough!”, etc., etc. While this was going on the fox, Robin G0FAT was heard (very strongly) , over the top of the QRM and a bearing of 328 degrees pointed up towards Dallington.

Frank departed stage right and we went left, aiming for Ashburnham and Cackle Street where we overtook Frank and then passed Norman GEYME going the other way.

Just south of Dallington, the next bearing led towards Rushlake Green, so we set off in that general direction and passed Norman G6YME at Earls Down, going the other, way. The bearing from Rushlake Green went back through Roads Wood and possibly Priory Hotel. At the cross roads leading to the Hotel we passed Norman, who had now stopped.

Skirting Roads Wood the map suggested a likely lane to Grovelye Farm, but the signal fell to virtua1ly nothing and we beat a hasty retreat to the ether lane leading to Padgham Down Farm.

On the top of a rise, there was a very convenient entrance to a field on the left and this provided a very good and extremely strong bearing into the trees on the opposite side of the lane. Also Robin admitted hearing, a car door slam (actually the boot lid after extricating the switched dipoles) so we knew he wasn’t far away.

We struck off into the woods down a very overgrown track, past a stagnant pool and across to a fence on the other side of the wood. Then was Robin laid out in the sun! We were very curious to see the horological instrument which had timed all the transmissions so precisely 7.5 minutes late, but it was nothing special!

Returning to the Priory Hotel drive entrance found nearly all the rest of the hounds consulting and consoling, but they never did find the fox!

Thank you Robin for a most enjoyable afternoon, I’ve lost count of the score, but I think we’re winning!

Brian G4BCO.

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