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Tweet Friday 28th May 2021

Pendle Forest Orienteers held Large Regional Event at Brun Valley Forest Park

Report by Kay Hawke, Pendle Forest Orienteers

149 Knoll E-side Credit: Kay Hawke

Being able to hold a large Regional event at Brun Valley allowed use to 'dig out' and use one of our best areas for offering differing terrain, features, and orienteering variety. With the easing of restrictions, it meant that planning such a large event was much easier in terms of club personnel being able to meet at the venue frequently to plan, co-ordinate and in some places, litter pick the area and the courses. Having to do all of that remotely would have made the event much more difficult to run and the saying 'many hands make light work' rings true here! Brun Valley due to its geographical location and size actually lies over two different borough councils, Burnley, and Lancashire, and so having to gain permissions from both can be time consuming at the best of times. Thankfully both councils were in agreement that the event was Covid safe and able to be held, though one was much swifter with permission than the other leading to a few sleepless nights!

For our largest event since Lockdown, we welcomed British Orienteering members from as far away as Birmingham and Somerset and could also welcome over West Cumberland Orienteering Club (WCOC) Juniors to compete against our Juniors in the Yvette Baker Heat. Having run many events in-between all of the lockdowns we have experienced, be it our local events to Street O's, School Sports Partnership events and Mapruns thankfully our planners, controllers and members have been able to keep sharp and, in the flow, and thankfully taking on hosting a Regional event was not too much of a shock to the system for the club!

We have many years of experience within the club from mapping to planning to controlling but even after all these years, none of that experience can account for a Funfair popping up right in the middle of the desired route choice between control 19-20 on the Blue course overnight! A swiftly made warning sign at the Start and a gentle reminder by our volunteers not to cross a bouncy castle on route to 20 and we are pleased to say that it did not hamper the course too much!

A grand day out by all 150 competitors at the event, numerous Pendle Forest Orienteer helpers, and all others involved in it!

Finished.  Photo credit:  Kay Hawke
In the woods.  Photo credit:  Kay Hawke
Now that's a challenge!

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