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Choir walking group

Choir walking group

There and back in Merstham

Eleven walkers, including debutant Niall McNevin, gathered at the Feathers Merstham on September 3 and set out northwards in glorious sunshine. Following a mile along the A23, with rolling downland paths in prospect, they started their ascent on Shepherd's Hill where the Joliffe Arms pub is being redeveloped. Local Tony Keel reminisced about many a pint being quaffed there, despite a tendency of his drinking buddies to ignore his directions and end up at the homophonic Jolly Farmers.

Striding out near Merstham

The mad dogs....

The choir walkers have made two outings recently, braving the heatwave to clock up more miles in the Kent and Surrey downland.  The first, on July 16, began and ended at the Dog and Duck in Outwood, with half-time at the Bell, also in Outwood. 

Walkers brave heat in  cornfield crossing 

Records tumble in mid-summer heat

Local expert Ralph Osborne made a welcome return to the walking group at the Grasshopper Inn near Westerham on 18 June. The brilliant sunny weather brought out a record group of seventeen walkers, including five women, also a record.

Braving the mid-summer heat

Puffing and crayfish

Dave the Navigator and Head of Apres Drinking Martin Perkins were beaten to the Skimmington Castle on Reigate Heath for pre-walk drinks on Friday 30 May by Johns Parker and Marshall – a notable event as this was only the second time these two stalwarts had been bested in three years of walking.  

The Reigate eleven

Spring walks in Farleigh and Richmond

For the first of our two outings, ten walkers, including new bass recruit John Parker, gathered at the Harrow in Farleigh on 13 April. We then discovered we were too large a group for the solitary chef on duty to feed us at 6pm, so social member Ted Mouat was dispatched in his car to find an alternative pub for after our walk. In the meantime, the walkers set off northwards across Farleigh Common. After a few hundred yards the pacemakers were overtaken by a scampering Misty, followed at a more sedate pace by latecomer Nick Hewitt making a welcome return to the walking group.

Springtime in Richmond, with navigator Dick Jones (see report below)

Winter walk at Arundel

Full winter conditions on Arundel downland

As part of their research into candidates for the new choir MD, walk organiser Peter and navigator Dave found themselves in Arundel on a snowy afternoon on 19 March.  They had travelled down ahead of an evening rehearsal in order to enjoy the town and surrounding countryside. After visiting the impressive cathedral (with surely potential for a choir visit one day) they parked at the Black Rabbit pub on the River Arun and donned full winter walking gear.

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