Mid Essex Trophy
Operator Roy G4 JAC with 10 Txs
Start Tiptree Heath, Site Hilly Fields to North
Station, divided by Cymbeline Way.
Times 1:00 - 4:00 pm. Tea at 'The Cricketers'.
In view of the
history of this event a 'two site' area was chosen and with a trophy at
stake I planned to give the old hands a good run for their money.
land used is owned by the council with farmland being let out to a
tenant farmer. Thanks to the lady living in the house by the T of Moat
for giving me all the contact information. With the Council
Wardens and Farmer all happy, a week before the event I was wandering
the Hilly Fields (near the College) full of confidence that all would
Then I saw a sign advertising a cycling event on
.......... 14/10/12! I contacted the chap running this for
the East Anglian Region, he was as put out as I was that the
Council had not mentioned the clash. We agreed that DFers
could cross the cycle tracks provided they took reasonable care.
|On the day I arrived
early so I could set up everything on the North side of the
A133 and leave plenty of time to find locations for Txs amongst the
cycle tracks. By 10 am there were hundreds of people and bikes! The
tracks were taped off and looked very much "Don't cross this" despite
the fact that a conversation with one of their officials confirmed that
we could. Clearly DFers would be put off by this!
So, with reluctance
I had to locate the Txs outside the lovely wooded area in the triangle
of footpaths under the word College. Fortunately there was a
lay-by with a large hole in the fence see P1 below. This
gave access to fields and dog walking paths, Jolly Joker L and
its Micros were set up as shown. H was more of a problem, I didn't want
it too close to my second 'beginners' area but it had to have access
without going across the cycle tracks, with time now pressing I decided
to add distance rather than depth of hide and put it on the path beside
the College. Starter Graham was contacted; not wishing to mention the
cycle event as posters were everywhere, the phrase "Take care near fast
moving objects but don't be put off by them" was passed on.
1-5 are the possible parking spaces (slightly moved to make
letters show up) There is a tunnel under the railway from P4
right). Two beginners areas (for Richard and Pam)
were centred on Jolly Jokers K and L. Tim was given
an A Joker so that he would bring Richard to me at the main Tx for a
bit of tuition, while Graham took a Jolly Joker, which should allow him
to take Pam to one of the beginners' areas.
So what happened
||What a beautiful
day, the sun is shining
and if the Maxi signals aren't enough surely the gentle steam rising
from the dung heap will have someone heading this way soon.....
Yes there is Colin, ........ but no, he runs off to the South.
Where can Tim and, more important, Richard be?
(Answer ... they parked 2 - 3Km to the North of the site).
At last! Here they come, and yes, Graham
and Pam too.
Richard and Pam are told to listen for K and then search for X and Y in the top
Soon Richard is back and he is sent in search of the Micros to the South using L as a guiding beacon.
First beginners' area - all very pleasant but where are those pesky Txs?
|The original path running North has been
duplicated on higher and drier ground but of course most of the old
hands preferred the swamp and brambles!
Hey guys, it's easy just follow the new Farm Trails .........
hmmm, I don't think they are listening.
Note the small bridge under 'e' of Westhouse on the map above, sadly
nowhere but a very high fence, definitely not the way to L (Rosie's
very Unjolly Joker). I suspect from Philip's comments in his
report (see bottom) that he also used this bridge rather than the large
one to the East - a very pleasant walk!
Larby signals that his sense is broken and he doesn't know which way to
go to A .... ....... just follow your nose.
Richard did remarkably well on just his 2nd event, especially
after a very long
initial run; Colin got 4 of the Minis but his set was too deaf to
hear the Micros. However, there is just one very clear
winner - a
'staggering' performance by young Philip, 3 Txs better than anyone
else. Very well done!
So how did he do it? ......
prove they still have balls.
initial gathering of the brave Essex wild men (and Women) was Tiptree.
glorious day, with seven teams taking the field. To the normal risks,
dangers had been added and we were warned to watch out for ‘high speed
objects’. Fathoming out what these latest fiendish innovations were,
pre-occupied me most of the afternoon.
huge signal, transmitted from a portable station which was giving out
location? (Bradwell-On-Sea). Another innovation perhaps, no just some
amateur doing weird stuff on a Sunday afternoon and swamping the
waited another five minutes and whilst some managed bearings in the
we still broke open the approximate just in case.
village and up onto the A12, northbound, the Maxi A regularly coming up
new frequency – 1978 KHz. This made it easier to switch the in-car set
transmissions, down to the minis on 1960 with nothing coming up until
just missed the turning for Eight Ash Green, when the first could just
heard, so slipped down the turning for Colchester and the roundabout,
pulling into Spring lane in time to catch the Maxi.
a brief trip in
the wrong direction, it became clear I had landed, so drove into The
and the Cymbeline Meadows farm trail. Parked in Front of the Football
club, who were in full swing, was this where the flying objects were
onto ‘I’ which seemed really close, the signal took me north through some
paddocks, across Lexden Dyke and onto the Golf Green - hard hat time! Eventually
found my way back onto a footpath which led me into some woodland right next to
the railway. Took a couple of transmissions to pin the mini down where I picked
up 40 points and two golf balls (ex-high speed objects). Checked for micros and
heard ‘W’ which was strong but actually miles away. Also picked up on A & K
but decided I had to make for my joker ‘L’. Passed by Graham and Pam on my way
south and also managed to miss J slightly to the west as I approached and
crossed the river Colne. Then ran into
the hedge-line for the A133 and had to climb a fairly high fence before coming
face to face with streams of more ‘high speed objects’ going in both
directions, making it really difficult to cross the road on a busy Sunday
afternoon. On the other side of the road and onto Hilly Fields, finding micro
‘W’ with 40 points. Then approaching the wood found this was taped off as there
were more ‘High Speed objects’ careering round on bikes. Eventually found
‘L’ close by on the right side of the cordoned off area, with 40 more points
and after a chat with a local Radio Ham, found micro ‘Z’ and 40 more.
to post some points, with a long run before a turn towards a large heap of
manure, Roy has thought of everything. Managed to get on the wrong side of the
hedge so missed ‘A’, but picked up on X close by, with Rosy then in hot pursuit
on ‘K’. Went back to A, picked up the points left there and posted all
collected so far and went back to find micro Y, which I had feared was way off
with H, but was only a bit further up the line towards Colchester.
Met up with
Colin, posted final points at about 3.30 pm as Graham and Pam appeared again
and we waited for the contest to finish.
By then having run miles, finding nine Tx, I was tired, cold and
knackered, so collected J and sat in the car trying to warm up before making
for the pub. The new frequencies had worked well for me, with a better grouping
on the dial and a logical progression from Micros on 1915 and 1930 up to Minis
on 1960 through to the maxi. So whilst the Tx where hard to find, the
frequencies were easier to pin down during the confusion of the contest.
|Thanks for the report and pictures Philip.
The league table is here, note that those
receiving a Wild Joker are not added to the league.