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Happy Valley Hash House Harriers

'On Preses' Past and Present

No:19 Chris Pook

Mockney Chris Pook is not your average ‘Man on the Clapham Omnibus’. A fictional figure with an opinion on everything from science to soccer to sex, often quoted in the popular press. Having grown up in Mayfair dodging Hitler’s V2s and side-stepping Saddam’s Scuds in the Gulf, Chris used his street cred to deserve his hash name of "Gandulf".

Our Chris is a Meccano-master civil engineer sliding his ruler across the Third World wherever the money was worth the hassle, including banking big bucks when the San Andreas Fault failed to unzip LA wide open.

Past hobbies include a marathon once every 10 years, playing with his hockey stick (?), dabbling with his paint-box and toy trainset, and doing impressions from The Goon Show.

Chris came to Cyprus to search for his inner-self but whether he is Neddie Seagoon, Eccles or Bluebottle is yet to be heard.  

 

No: 18 Barney Bruce 

                      

From a cast of thousands? Barney stepped into the breach as On Pres for the second time in July 2020 in the middle of the Covid crisis He had the dubious                                            honour of  having to cancel more hashes than all the other ON Pres' combined, but after a stop/start/stop period in the Autumn/Winter and Spring of 2020/21                                            Hashing started again on 3 Jun 21 with appropriate distancing etc. Let's hope it stays that way!!

No:17 Tony Flower

Some Hashers earn their nicknames and others are born with them. Such was the case when young Clive Flower joined the Royal Navy he was immediately known as “Colly” but for some reason he chose to be called Tony? After a dozen years or so he was press-ganged by the Sussex Constabulary and condemned to pound the pavements of Pompey pinching matelots for puking in the gutter. Having the good fortune to marry the lovely Mary who wanted more out if life than psychedelic pavements, Clive/Tony/Colly moved north to his home in Hull (as in pull, not as in hull of a boat, although he had missed a few of them).

A strong runner in 3 Hashes in Cyprus and known to speak his mind without fear of the lash, HVH welcomes our 17th On Pres and On On Matelot or whoever you are today…

No:16 The Peter Smith

Another retired Gunner so standards are being raised, if not inflated. The Peter Smith is renowned for the long shadow he casts in the sunshine and his endless legs are a natural target for dogs who cannot see a closer tree. Peter is also famous for these self-made multi-coloured tights that he wears to frighten off snakes and stress his interest in Things Thespian.

His anecdotal titbits from military history are listened to out of awe rather than interest and the punch lines often produce that glazed look Hashers are known to adopt after a dozen or so cold beers on a winter's eve. His stock of jokes are recycled like the proverbial Scottish Battalion condom, but his innate sense of humour and bonhomie shine out whenever there is fun to be had. If there isn't any then he makes it happen. Never a dull moment which is well up to the standard of the Happy Valley Hash.

No:15 Chris Pook

Mockney Chris Pook is not your average ‘Man on the Clapham Omnibus’. A fictional figure with an opinion on everything from science to soccer to sex, often quoted in the popular press. Having grown up in Mayfair dodging Hitler’s V2s and side-stepping Saddam’s Scuds in the Gulf, Chris used his street cred to deserve his hash name of "Gandulf".

Our Chris is a Meccano-master civil engineer sliding his ruler across the Third World wherever the money was worth the hassle, including banking big bucks when the San Andreas Fault failed to unzip LA wide open.

Past hobbies include a marathon once every 10 years, playing with his hockey stick (?), dabbling with his paint-box and toy trainset, and doing impressions from The Goon Show.

Chris came to Cyprus to search for his inner-self but whether he is Neddie Seagoon, Eccles or Bluebottle is yet to be heard.  

No:14 Colin Garland

‘Friends, Hashers and Harriettes; lend me your ear. I am to be your On Pres for at least the next year. And ‘twill be my honour so to be’ said Colin Garland, for yes ‘tis he.

Bristol-born but raised in Wales, at a boarding school (there were just males) In his salad days when he was green, a fairer youth was ne’er to be seen. A soldier of fortune he fought for the Moor; in Germany, Cyprus and Singapore.

Cry havoc and let slip the dogs of our hash, to your own self be true and follow the trash! For Colin of the stentorian voice, will bring you the Bard – you’ll have no choice. If brevity be the soul of wit, he promises us a needle sharp crit. All the world’s this actor’s stage, forsooth he is of uncertain age? Wisely and slow; they stumble that run fast.

His wisdom proclaims why he is always last. So lead on McDuff and witches three, a question craves answer – to be or not to be?

No:13 Mike Woods

Being ex RN Mike often had to bend over backwards to get ahead in his chosen career- I think? The RN or ‘Andrew’ as it is oft times called, rejoices in a plethora of nicknames and from their archives his nickname is not ‘Scouse’ ‘Chippy’ ‘Tiger’ or anything as obvious. It is ‘Slinger’ which sea-farer legend says he earned from his shipmates who told him to do just that with his Hook after his cheeky habit of bed-hopping frequently from one hammock to another in the lonely nights on the lower mess deck. This notoriety has followed him into retirement, as has the Rum and Baccy bit. He has sworn an oath of celibacy and sobriety – such a loss to the champagne and confetti industry, so he is no bloody good as an On Pres of a Pompey hash! However, HVH is a family Hash, tolerant and forgiving to a fault. As a submariner, Mike will be bringing fishy frivolity from the dives of Devonport docklands to enrich our crits with the lash of his salty humour. On On Slinger!

No:12 Barney Bruce

Barney ‘Birdman’ Bruce was all there was left when the Fat lady refused to sing. Ex RAF Birdman leapt at the chance to fly as HVH On Pres but he was never a Red Baron runner, more the grass roots type of Erk. To get himself noticed he volunteered to mow Biggin Hill airfield by hand, which led to his CO suggesting that would he not be better off as an amusing circus performer? This ensured that he was instantly commissioned into the Officers’ Mess. In his lust for gratuitous fulfilment and adulation, Birdman slumped to become a boring interhash pro, yakking on about his ‘bin there dun that, gotta T shirt’ runs, yawn. Currently, he is a member of 3 hashes (get a life) but HVH only let him in so we could enjoy the company of Ladybird as well. He has promised to auction his crude T shirt collection at the end of his tenure to raise enough brownie points to pay for his heart-broken parents to finally get married. 

No:11 Geoff Fryatt

A retired Army person, author, cartoonist, artist, singer, cat lover, raconteur and showman, it would seem Geoff is the man we should aspire to emulate. The problem is he cannot run. This a a bit of a bugger on the Hash, but he plods on uphill and falling down dale, scratched and knackered like the runners – but here is the rub – he doesn’t drink beer either! This makes him popular with the drinkers who would have to risk driving otherwise and is probably his way of making friends. If he started drinking Keo like a real hasher, he might be able to run up a few hills and actually enjoy rolling down them! His son Alex is an HVH exile and Master of the HantsH3 in Rushmoor, but he enjoys his drinks!  And he can run so he must take after his mum.

 

No:10 Geoff Cosson

Yet another teacher, but thank goodness for Geoff who produced reams of ancient hash bumpf when he rescued them from his outside WC. However the Antiques Roadshow rejected them, although his repertoire of old jokes did raise a few eyebrows. He is an ex SCEA floater, and surfaced in Cyprus and the UAE where he ran with the Al Ain H3, having shamelessly bragged about his experiences as the Tarzan of Cyprus hashing. Tin Tin prefers champagne at the Four Seasons if someone else is paying, otherwise it is Keo and Kalamari in the FammaGee. Born in West Ham (try explaining that to a UAE immigration officer) Geoff’s ambition was to be an On Pres anywhere. He scraped through his mock year and promises to do better next time. 7/10 

No: 9 Issy Blackburn

Issy is always busy and she is obviously so proficient at whatever she turns her hand to. She swears (politely) that she has only made one big mistake in her life and he is on the HVH too. As a slender young Scottish SACW, and much to the regret of the Red Arrows, she was lured off to Oz by Dennis and has shared his name and wine rack for decades. As the first ever female On Pres of HVH, she did not let fame go to her curly head, but kept her hashers in line with her feminine wiles. (What exactly is a wile, do men have them too?) Issy will know. Her heart is gold but her tongue is sharp if you don’t measure up, so don’t be fooled by her kind face. NB Dennis is still only in his mid-40s...true!

No: 8 Chris Mortimer

When you meet this diffident drop out from the Banking Crisis, you could be back in the unseen world of the Goon Show. Chris is a brave guitarist and was always deft with his fingers, according to local pie-makers, and his lovely wife Faith can vouch for that too. Actor, director, songwriter, musician, witty – no, that is a lie. Chris was never a jester. His jokes were so deep that they were measured on the Richter Scale and he was so shy he gave his crits by email and HVH Run Trophies were sent out by DHL. Still, he survived his year at the helm (yes, he is/was a sailer of yachts too) and now cruises through life on the crest of his joint bank account with his favourite 50 Shades of Pink author. He loves curling up with a spanking good yarn, does our Chris!

No: 7 Laurie Mitchell

In his former life Laurie was a male model. Devoted to his personal body-temple and renowned for strutting his stuff on the catwalks, he could pout his Mick Jagger lips at any female and they would eat from his hand. Sadly, despite a heavy diet of Botox sandwiches, he lost his looks and became a welder’s mate, humping bent poles (careful there!) and twisting steel like Chubby Checker on Pringles. In his day he was Hash Haberdash, where he introduced a new size range of T shirt for the comfortably built expat known as the Keo XXXX, complete with colour-coded corset and in-built catheter. Send SAE for a free sample today. Now half the girth of his former self, he has taken to body-building so he can fit into his vast wardrobe of Hash T shirts.

No: 6 Wilf Telford

The oldest of 3 Army Brats born in India and schooled in Egypt, Wilf enlisted as soon as he could in order to become an intelligence specialist before they sussed the truth. In the olden days, anyone who could read out loud was spooned into that job and if they could do joined-up writing they became officers. It was cushy in Cairo, but Wilf yearned for adventure so he took up the challenge of postings in Germany, Holland and Cyprus, yawn. After demob in 1988 he designed and set up a training company but failed his own entrance exam! Wilf is a passionate lover (of fish and chips), wines and England RU. He keeps a home in Cyprus just in case, and really enjoyed his tour as On Pres of HVH. We are glad that at least somebody did, Wilf! 

No: 5 Nick Smith

As a Buddy Holly tribute singer in his youth, Nick got nowhere and he is still doing the same on the Hash. The only check he has ever found was one made out to the ABF, and the elusive HVH circle of blue flour he yearns to have attached to his name on the crit, is yet to appear. At home in Tala he leads a dog’s life, surviving on tins of Pedigree Chum and Chappie and leftovers from the last Hash meze, and for many years he thought everybody ate from pink plastic bags? He is fully house-trained, micro-chipped and vaccinated so if anyone wants to take him walkies, bring a Keo and a Chew Chew bone and off you trot. Nick is a jolly nice chap, but isn’t that the worst thing you can say about a hasher?

No: 4 John Kille

Pronounced as in the stubby lump that dangles under a boat’s bottom, it is easy to see why Clan Kille adopted this descriptive handle. Our Young Jon version is a magical musician, however, and can have more fun with his organ in one performance than most men can in a lifetime. Adept at riffs and trills, Jon performs better after a night on the teachers’ popular take-away of Keo with baked beans on toast, after which he can really make the duvet flutter with his unique rendering of Bach’s Fugue. As an experienced solo fiddler in the bathroom, his crescendo often earns him a standing ovation, or clap as it is more commonly known. Jon is a Rheindahlen H3 Exile where he played a leading role with his handy horn to the delight of the lady members.

No: 3 Paul Hall

At his birth his Mum and Dad wanted to name their baby son Albert, but opted for Paul instead to avoid him being confused with a large, rotund edifice constantly emitting loud noises late at night. They failed. Paul is an enforced Exile from both the Brunei H3 and the Rheindhalen H3, so he decided to found his own – ergo HVH3? Paul wears a rag-arsed collection of old Hash T shirts long past their smell-by dates, but like most teachers, he claims to have a ‘wardrobe full of ‘em indoors’. He should come out of the closet more often himself as with his white hair and pallor he looks like something that wiggles away from the light when you turn over a rock. Paul was Top Boy in the Infants school all of his career and he hopes to matriculate in Lego as soon as the big hand is on 12 and the little one is extracted from his botty. 

No: 2 Mark Richardson

A ‘Posh Jock’ by birth and an RAF dentist by luck,  the sort of chap your sister would love to – find?. He looks braw in his kilt and has the shanks fay it too, and there was ne’er a problem wi’ his bold skean dhu. His clatter t’was awesome but lost on the hashers, but if you could unnerstond it, that’s what really matters. To a gaggle o’ expats Mark added style an’ some class, but to the suffering young airmen he was a pain in the – bum? A pawkie On Pres who was way, way too nice, that’s why they made him come back and do the job twice. He nagged us like toothache but we’ll no’ mind the pain, but if it pleases your Air Lords, dinna’ post yon birkie here ever again!

No:1 'Tug' Wilson

(Freely translated from hieroglyphics found on the wall of a primitive dunny in deepest Happy Valley) Nobody ever knew his real name, but Tug is a given if you are unlucky enough to be born a Wilson. Grandson of a left wing pipe-smoker who dabbled in politics and modelled Gannex raincoats, our Tug had to think fast if he was to be famous too. After being rejected for roles as an alien in Star Wars, Jurassic Park and Planet of the Apes, in 2000 Tug got a role as a basketball with Tom Hanks in Cast Away but having been lost overboard he was washed up at HV beach in 2002. Worn out and weary but delirious with joy at his survival, he decided to form his own tribe, clan or hash to attract possible mating partners, so he opened membership to females and the HVH was born. History does not record if he actually begat anyone in Cyprus, but the continuance of his DNA is living proof that hashing is sexy, even if not all hashers are!