All posts by Angus Lund

Oliver O'Brien awarded prestigious mapping trophy

Congratulations to Oliver O’Brien who has been awarded British Orienteering’s Bonington Trophy for the best contribution to mapping. The award was announced at British Orienteering’s AGM on Friday 29 March.

Ollie’s involvement with maps and mapping reaches far beyond the limits that are normally found in an orienteering mapper.

  • He has created the 6km² City of London map over the last five years, one of the most popular and highly-used orienteering maps in the UK.
  • His on-line event map has become a key directory for orienteers across the country to find events.
  • His Open Orienteering Map tool has helped to grow the sport by making it substantially easier and quicker to generate basic maps.

The trophy was donated to British Orienteering by its honorary President, Sir Chris Bonington, the world famous mountaineer. It consists of a piece of rock collected from the summit of Mount Everest on Chris’s 1985 expedition, mounted on a wooden plinth.

Ollie’s City of London map was also highly commended in the Walsh Trophy for 2012. This trophy is awarded for the best urban or sprint map drawn to ISSOM specification.

SLOW Night-O Series 2012-13 Winners

Congratulations to the winners of the inaugural SLOW Night-O Series. The final race to decide the 2012-13 series was held on Wimbledon Common. The final results showed that it was a very close competition with five points separating the top three places. First place winners received lanterns as trophies; second place received candles.

The category winners are:

  • Men’s Open – Ed Catmur
  • Women’s Open – Jayne Sales
  • Men’s Veterans – Andy Robinson
  • Women’s Veterans – Fran Kenden

SLOW Night-O Series 2012-13 Winners
Trophy winners Andy Robinson, Ed Catmur, Don McKerrow, Jayne Sales and Nicky Adams at the Hand in Hand on Wimbledon Common.

The series has been successful with 57 competitors in total, and may be expanded to five races for 2013-14.

Many thanks to the coordinator of the series, Don McKerrow and to each of the individual event organisers and planners.

Event Date Organiser
Richmond Park 30 Oct 2012 Don McKerrow
Wimbledon Common 27 Nov 2012 Paul Couldridge
Richmond Park 29 Jan 2013 James Lyne
Wimbledon Common 26 Feb 2013 Dan Findlay-Robinson

Results from the Wimbledon Common Night-O, 26 February 2013

Results from the Wimbledon Common Night-O:

Organiser’s comments

I want to thank everyone for coming and hope they enjoyed the ‘runners’ course I set. The emphasis was upon selecting the right route choice between the controls, with the technical difficulty of the controls being lower than other events. Spending time ‘hunting’ for a control in the dark defeats the object of a night race for me! That said, I do know some of you found it a challenging course, but everyone seemed to enjoy the event!

Dan Findlay-Robinson

Highbury & Islington Street-O: 12 March 2013

The sixth Street-O race of the 2012-13 series takes place in Highbury & Islington. This event will use electronic timing for the start and finish – please bring your SI card if you have one.

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Like all our Street-Os, this a public race – all are welcome. Please RSVP to the event via Facebook (link above) to let us know you are coming – you can also see who else is coming here and post queries. If you are not on Facebook, please let the organiser know you are coming so that the correct number of maps are printed.

LocationHighbury & Islington
AddressThe Barnsbury, 209-211 Liverpool Road
Latitude/longitude51.539, -0.1071
OS grid referenceTQ314839
MapsGoogle Maps, OpenStreetMap


At The Barnsbury pub on Liverpool Road between Angel and Highbury & Islington tube stations.

Public Transport

The pub is about 10 minutes walk on Liverpool Road, half a mile from both Angel and Highbury & Islington tube stations. There are also plenty of buses running on Upper Street, parallel to Liverpool Road, between the two stations.

Entry Fee

£1 for SLOW members, students and juniors, £2 for others.


RegistrationBetween 1815 and 1930
Start TimesBetween 1830 and 1930

Race Format

Normal Street-O format with clues located at each control site. You have 60 minutes to visit as many controls as possible, in any order, and return to the finish. The map is 1:10000. All checkpoints are in lit areas, and it is possible to visit all on lit (albeit sometimes dimly) roads and paths. Some runners may choose to take unlit paths in some places, so a headtorch is advisable.

SI will be used to time the start and finish, so please bring your SI card if you have one. Don’t forget to bring a pen to write down your answers to the clues as you go around, and a watch. General information about street orienteering.


Fluorescent clothing is recommended for safety. All competitors take part at their own risk. You MUST be over 16 to take part in this event, unless you are accompanied by a parent or guardian. This is a condition of our insurance.


Food, drink and active debate about optimum route choice at the pub. The pub is opening its kitchen mid-week specially for us, so please support them by eating there after your run.


Results will be available on the SLOW website shortly after the event.


Organiser/Planner: Rob Patterson.

Club Night Talk from UK International Ralph Street

Next Tuesday we are lucky enough that top SLOW Orienteer Ralph Street will be giving a talk at our Clubnight. Ralph will go over a few tips that will help you not only on the evening’s training (route choice) but also how to improve on your skills to make you a better Orienteer! Please try to get there early so that Ralph can start by 18:35 and be finished by 19:00 giving you time to try out your new found knowledge.

We are again at the Thames Hare & Hounds clubhouse just east of the Robin Hood Roundabout. The entrance is at the south end of the building leading up the stairs to the clubroom.

CompassSport Cup & Trophy Qualifying – Results

Congratulations to Southdowns Orienteers and Essex Stragglers who qualified for the CompassSport Cup & Trophy finals, after the south east qualifying round held on Headley Heath.

Lost property

Please email the organiser Nigel Saker to claim these items:

  • Child’s black woolly gloves with grey fingertips
  • A rather worn compass found together with an All Controls map

SLOW runners compete on Headley Heath

Organiser’s comments

I hope you all enjoyed Jon Coles’s courses on Headley Heath. We were lucky to have a dry sunny day after some early mist and fog, especially after the wintry weather of the previous weeks.

From my point of view as organiser, the event seemed to run very smoothly and there are many people to thank of this. First of all, to the team of about 40 helpers from SLOW and MV, too many to name individually.

Rob and his team at High Ashurst provided us with excellent facilities as I am sure you agree. You will be interested to know that the portion of your entry fee that went towards paying for the event centre will soon be invested in sports equipment for the centre. Rob, himself, was very impressed with the way that the orienteers conducted themselves, for which I thank you all.

Thanks also to the Red Cross volunteers, who were a cheerful presence around the a Grand Hall. Fortunately, only two of you made use of their services.

We must also thank the five drivers from Hardings Coaches who entered into the spirit of the event and managed to get you all safely up and down without too much queueing.

Nigel Saker, Organiser

Controller’s comments

Good terrain, good courses, good map, good organisation, good weather – I think we can safely say this was a good event. Everything went very well and this is due to the effort put in by Jon as planner, Nigel as organiser and all the other MV and SLOW helpers. Thank you for making my job very easy. It is very nice when the competitors thank the controller for their excellent courses, so thanks again to Jon for a great job.

Vince Joyce, Controller

All photos courtesy of Mark Cheesman

CompassSport Cup & Trophy 2013 Qualifying Round

Printable version of this page: Headley Heath 2013 Final Details

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LocationHeadley Heath, near Dorking
AddressHigh Ashurst, but parking at The Ashcombe School, Croft Avenue in Dorking
Latitude/longitude51.2388, -0.3274
OS grid referenceTQ169502
MapsGoogle Maps, OpenStreetMap

RegistrationBetween 0930 and 1200
Start TimesBetween 1000 and 1230

Courses close at 14:30.


Parking is very limited at the Event Centre so parking for cars will be at Ashcombe School. We are using the entrance off Croft Avenue, which is directly across the A24 from the entrance to Dorking Station. There is a crossing point through the central reservation but no traffic lights. Use postcode RH4 1LN for SatNav.

Competitors will then be bussed to High Ashurst. Estimated total time from car park to the start call-up allowing for waiting for the bus and walking to the start is about 50 minutes.

There will be a £1 charge per vehicle for parking at Ashcombe School.

Drivers of MPVs and larger vehicles that have been authorized to park at the Event Centre will receive separate instructions on how to approach High Ashurst. If you have not received a car park pass for High Ashurst please do not attempt to drive there – you will be turned back at the entrance.

Public Transport

There are main line train services from London Victoria and Waterloo to Dorking Main, which is about 10 minutes walk from Ashcombe School. There is also a 2 hourly cross-country train service to Dorking Deepdene, which is also about 10 minutes walk from Ashcombe School.

Coach Transfer to the Event Centre

Coaches to the Event Centre will run about every 10 minutes from the Car Park. The first coach will be at about 9:00am and the last coach back from High Ashurst will be at about 3:00pm. Please do not wear muddy shoes in the coaches. There is plenty of space for bags in the marquee at the Event Centre.

Event Centre

The Event Centre is at High Ashurst – Surrey Outdoor Learning and Development Centre. Grid Reference: TQ186534. Within the grounds of the Event Centre there is a large marquee that contains Enquiries, EOD, SI hire, Download and Bag Drop. High Ashurst are serving hot drinks and hot food by the Grand Hall between 10:30 and 2:30.
High Ashurst


We regret that High Ashurst does NOT allow dogs.


Courses, and their eligibility for the CompassSport Cup and Trophy Courses, are:

Course Course Eligible Age Classes Distance (km) Climb (m) Controls
1 Brown Men Open 9.4 280 21
2 Blue Women Women Open 7.0 185 19
3 Blue Men M45+ M20- 7.3 210 19
4 Green Women W45+ W20- 4.9 105 16
5 Green Men M60+ 5.2 110 16
6 Short Green Veterans M75+ W60+ 3.6 80 12
7 Light Green Men 18- Women 18- 3.5 95 12
8 Orange Men 14- Women 14- 3.1 80 10
Yellow 1.9 45 8
White 1.5 30 9

There will be a String Course in High Ashurst grounds, open between 10:00 and 12:30. The start/finish is about 100m from the Bus drop-off point and the event centre marquee (as shown on the Event Centre map).

Map & Terrain

1:10000, newly resurveyed by Mike Elliot to January 2013 and printed on waterproof A4 paper. Control descriptions are printed on the front of the map, in English for Yellow and White, and pictorial for the rest. The Brown course is in two parts, printed back to back.

The area is a mosaic of open heathland, with a cover of heather, gorse or bracken, chalk downland, and mixed woodland of varying runnability. There is ongoing conservation work in a couple of areas.

Topographically, the Heath consists of a plateau, two deep wooded valleys, with some more gentle open slopes. There are areas of complex ground detail.

A stock fence almost totally encloses the Heath. If you cross this fence (only the Brown and Blue courses are likely to), it is recommended to use one of the many gates, but use of the gates is not obligatory. Please report any damage to the finish.

A small herd of Belted Galloway cattle have free range of the area within the stock fence. They are extremely placid, but also unlikely to move away at your approach. Please keep your distance, and please ensure younger competitors are aware of their presence.

The Heath is heavily used by walkers and horse riders. Please respect their right to enjoy the Heath.

Start & Finish

The start is 550m from the event centre marquee, crossing a 45m deep valley with steep sides that can be slippery.

Allow 10 to 20 minutes depending on state of agility. The route is not suitable for pushchairs. Call up at –4 minutes. Loose control descriptions will be available in the start lanes. Both pictoral and english descriptions will be available for the Orange course.

Please note that shadowing of Juniors on CSC courses is not permitted.

The finish is a level 300 metres from the event centre marquee.


Download is in the event centre marquee. You must report to download by the course closure time of 14:30 even if you have not completed your course.

Start Times

Start times are posted on Fabian 4. Please check your times. We recognize that there may be delays caused by the bussing up from the car park, so competitors who arrive late at the start will be given the next available start time subject to the required start time separations being maintained.

Entry on the Day

There will be limited entry on the day (EOD) for courses 1 to 7, subject to map availability. There is good availability of maps on the Orange, Yellow and White courses. You are advised to arrive early if you want to enter on the day.

Course Seniors Juniors
1 – 7 £12 £6
Orange, White, Yellow £6 £6

SportIdent (SI) punching will be used. Dibbers may be hired at £1 for Seniors and free for Juniors.

First Aid and Refreshments

The Red Cross is providing First Aid cover. They will be located in the Grand Hall (see the Event Centre map).
Snacks, hot food and hot and cold drinks will be available to purchase beside the Grand Hall. These refreshments are provided by High Ashurst kitchen staff.


Controller Vince Joyce (SO)
Planner Jon Coles (MV)
Organiser Nigel Saker (SLOW) – 07403 131423

Competitors take part in this race at their own risk. Entries and results will be processed by computer – your entry will be taken as agreement to this. The competition is run under the CompassSport Cup Competition Rules version 1.3.

Check the SLOW website prior to travelling for any updates, particularly if the weather is bad.

Wimbledon Common Night-O February 2013

The final race of the 2012-2013 Night-O Series takes place on Wimbledon Common, south-west London, on Tuesday 26 February 2013. The pub is the Hand in Hand at 6, Crooked Billet on Wimbledon Common.

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LocationWimbledon Common
AddressThe Hand in Hand, 6 Crooked Billet, Wimbledon Common
Latitude/longitude51.4213, -0.2275
OS grid referenceTQ233706
MapsGoogle Maps, OpenStreetMap

Start TimesBetween 1830 and 1930


  • Long – (Technical difficulty: hard)
  • Short – (Technical difficulty: moderate)


  • SI electronic punching (SI cards available to hire).
  • Headlamps available for hire – email organiser to reserve.


Entry on the day only.

Current SLOW members All others
£2 £3


Registration and afterwards at The Hand in Hand, 6 Crooked Billet, Wimbledon Common, London, SW19 4RG. Bus route 200 takes five minutes from Wimbledon Station.

Further Enquiries

Please email the organiser Dan Findlay-Robinson – .

Competitors take part in this race at their own risk. Entries and results will be processed by computer, your entry will be taken as agreement to this. The competition is run under the rules and guidelines of, and sanctioned by, British Orienteering.