Looking for something for the Spring 2007 offering for the CLOK Juniors, Paul came up with the plan for a sprint distance chasing sprint! Ideal training for the JK Sprint and the British Sprint Championships in Scarborough!
Stewart Park and Ormesby Hall are two oases of parkland in the suburbs of Middlesbrough, separated by the Middlesbrough-Whitby railway line, and both have been mapped. The pair have been combined before, some years ago, for an evening series event.
Stewart Park is run by Middlesbrough Borough Council, and was formerly the site of a large mansion house. Although only about 10m of arcading are all that exist of the building, the grounds around, with the terraces, pathways and ornamental ponds still survive. Captain Cook, the famous explorer, was born in a cottage which used to stand near the site of the mansion house, and the council now have a great little museum as the centrepiece of the park. For many families, however, it's the animal enclosures with the goats, deer and llamas which are the main attraction!
Ormesby Hall is a small National Trust property, with nice grounds and the Cleveland Police Mounted Section using the stables as their base. There is a very nice tearoom and for all kids (large and small!) three model railway layouts! The date for our event (Saturday 17 March) was their first day of opening for the 2007 season!
I planned the Prologue in Stewart Park, where there is lots of parking, and then walked people the 1.5km to the front of Ormesby Hall for the start and finish of the Chase. As usual, I included quite a high density of controls, particularly at the 'spectator controls' coming around the front of the Hall.
Not a bad turnout, with groups travelling from UDOC and EBOR. Everyone seemed to enjoy themselves, particularly the EBOR bunch!
After we had tidied up and collected in, I took middle daughter round the hall. We were their first visitors of the 2007 season, and E was the guinea pig for their new children's trail - we helped them iron out a couple of problems!
We finished off in the tearoom for some nice cakes and a cup of coffee for me. More staff than customers, but I'm sure it will get busier as the season progresses!