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Tweet Friday 27th November 2020

UPDATE: Resumption of orienteering in England from 2 December 2020

Following the confirmation by the Prime Minister yesterday (23 November) that England will return to a three-tier system of regional restrictions once the current period of national restrictions ends at 00:01 on 2 December.  The Board of British Orienteering met on 27 November and have agreed that: 

From Wednesday, 2 December 2020, orienteering events using electronic punching and timing equipment can take place providing that they follow these guidelines.

People are advised not to travel into or out of tier 3 areas (very high alert) in order to participate or volunteer in an orienteering activity or event.

This does not apply to travel where it is necessary to enable supervised coaching sessions and competitions for under-18s or activities for disabled people.

Anyone organising or taking part in an orienteering event or activity must ensure that they are aware of the local COVID alert level both in their home area and at the intended venue for their activity, and act in line with the restrictions which apply.

Further guidance will be published on Tuesday, 1 December 2020.

Tweet Wednesday 4th November 2020

Suspension of Competitions in England 4 November 2020

Following the Prime Minister’s official announcement on Saturday, 31 October 2020, there will be a new, month-long set of restrictions coming into force throughout England.

These new measures will come into force across England from 00:01 on Thursday 5 November 2020 until Wednesday 2 December 2020.

Having reviewed both the new laws and the official guidance published by the UK government for England, the Board of British Orienteering has made the difficult decision that all orienteering events and organised club activities will be suspended in England from Thursday 5 November for as long as these restrictions remain in force.

The full statement can be found here.

The latest Orienteering guidance for the whole of the UK can be found here

Tweet Wednesday 2nd December 2020

The Early Years of Hertfordshire Orienteering Club aged 52 and a bit

Report by Alan Rosen who has been a member of Happy Herts since 1969

The club was founded in 1968 by a handful of orienteers in a part of the country which was not and is not well-endowed with lots of high-quality forests, and it would not have been surprising if Happy Herts (HH) had gone the way of so many of the earliest clubs which folded or merged within a few years of starting up – we are slightly amused to be the longest-lasting alliteratively-named orienteering club in the country!

As with other clubs, our history is punctuated by the events we’ve organised and the events we’ve taken part in, set against the evolution of the sport over the years – from ink stamps to pin-punches to dibbing (and now MapRunF/G), from master maps to overprinting machines to digital printing, from course planning with a pencil, piece of string and ruler to OCAD, Condes and Purple Pen. 

For a club which always thought it was constrained by its limited terrain, we have somehow produced maps of over forty woods and parks, plus around forty street areas and twenty schools, and in a normal year typically run over thirty events ranging from informal and street events to British Championships. 

The club has grown from 30 members in 1969 to 274 at the end of 2019 and it was a nice accolade to be highlighted by British Orienteering as having the highest percentage of junior members in their 2019 Annual Report. 

HH’s first magazine, Pacemaker, started in 1982, followed by the club newsletter which is now up to edition 275, so from that point onwards the club’s progress has been reasonably well documented, but the early days are stored in a couple of large boxes and in the memories of those who can recall orienteering in the sixties and seventies.

So, it seemed like a good idea to mark over half a century of Hertfordshire orienteering by going through the club archives and writing a history which also looks at the development of the sport nationally at the same time. 

Of course, it’s not the dry facts that make history interesting, it’s the unexpected snippets, so to find out the answers to these questions and learn about the club’s evolution, have a look at

  • What did the Victorians ever do for orienteers in Epping Forest, Burnham Beeches and Hampstead Heath?
  • On which piece of HH land was the original Harry Potter’s Whomping Willow, and what type of tree was it? (hint: not a willow!)
  • Which orienteer has an unrivalled record at HH Burnham Beeches events, winning at least twelve times over 48 years?
  • Which pieces of HH land have been used for James Bond/Harry Potter/Carry On films?
  • Why did Chris Brasher (one of the founders of orienteering in the UK) get in touch with Harold Abrahams (1924 Olympic 100m champion, Chariots of Fire) about orienteering?

There are also lots of extracts of HH maps over the years, from the earliest OS photocopies to the hand-coloured map of Bentley Priory to the many editions of maps of Ashridge, Burnham Beeches and Whippendell.

The history is dedicated to everyone who has contributed to the success of the club over 50+ years, with special thanks to all the club members and those from other clubs who have been invaluable in collating the material. 

The sport today is both very similar and very different to the late sixties’ version but what is unchanged is the commitment and determination of members to put on enjoyable events – and I’m sure that will also apply to the next 50 years!

Jennie Taylor Communications Officer at British Orienteering asked Alan Rosen from Happy Herts:  

"In your view, what do you think is the key thing that remains still relevant today 52 years on within your club?"

Alan commented:  "The importance of doing the simple things well at events - controls in the right place etc."








Clive Allen, British Orienteering Archivist, comments: “Several clubs have researched and written up their histories, but nothing has been published quite like the fascinating publication about the first 15 years of Happy Herts, written by Alan Rosen. Lavishly illustrated with photos, maps, event comments and paper cuttings, the 80-page book covers far more than plain history, documenting in lively detail some of the huge developments in mapping, event procedures and even British orienteering policy from the 60s to the 80s and in some cases to the present. A great read!”

The full report is available to read on the Happy Herts website here.  

Tweet Thursday 21st May 2020

British Orienteering 39th Annual General Meeting

British Orienteering  would like to take this opportunity to remind you of our 2020 Annual General Meeting which will take place on Saturday, 1st August 2020.

We note the current issues surrounding COVID-19 (coronavirus) and the rapidly developing public health guidance in the UK at the time of writing. This includes social distancing requirements, additional guidance for those over the age of 70 or with underlying medical conditions, and restrictions on public gatherings. The health and safety of our members and staff is always our utmost priority.

We have therefore decided to hold the AGM in our offices. If the public health guidance remains unchanged, we regretfully will not be able to run an AGM event as in previous years, and members will not be able to attend in person. We will, however, ensure that an appropriate videoconferencing solution is in place to enable those members who wish to take part in the AGM to do so remotely.

We will continue to monitor the situation and the latest available public health guidance and will provide updates concerning our AGM on our website at Members will still be able to submit questions either before or at the meeting.

All members are welcome to attend.

Please see the details below.



Registered in England & Wales No.1606472

39th Annual General Meeting 



British Orienteering Federation Limited National Office, Scholes Mill, Old Coach Road, Tansley, Matlock DE4 5FY

Notice is hereby given that the Annual General Meeting of the above-named Company will be held at the British Orienteering Offices, Scholes Mill, Old Coach Road, Tansley, Matlock DE4 5FY on Saturday, 1st August 2020.

The AGM is called for the transaction of the following business:

  • Apologies for absence
  • To receive the Minutes of the Annual General Meeting of 19th April 2019.
  • Chair’s Report
  • Treasurer’s Report
  • To receive from the Board the Company's accounts
  • Chief Executive’s Report
  • Proposals
  • to appoint the Company's auditors
  • to decide the annual subscriptions and affiliation fees
  • to transact such other business as may be legitimately brought before it;
  • to appoint (as appropriate) the President, and Vice-President(s); and
  • to elect the Elected Directors in place of those retiring.
  • Any Other Business
  • Closing of AGM

Please forward any items for inclusion on the agenda to the Chief Executive – by 17:00, Thursday, 11th June 2020.

Further details on the business of the AGM, including the Agenda, and Voting by Proxy form, will be posted on British Orienteering’s website on or before Friday, 10th July 2020



All applicants must be nominated by two British Orienteering members. For further information or a preliminary discussion, please contact the Chief Executive or Chair.

British Orienteering is looking for new elected directors to take office at the AGM. There are three places on the board up for election. These include two vacancies: one for a two-year directorship, replacing Graham Patten, who has resigned, and one for a three-year directorship, replacing Judith Holt, who will stand down having served the maximum of three consecutive terms as a director. Ruth Beale has agreed to stand for election for a further three-year term as a director, having come to the end of her first term.

This is an exciting time to become a director, with the strategic refresh offering a real chance to shape the future of orienteering in the UK. Providing strategic direction for the sport is at the heart of the role of the board of directors, alongside overseeing the operations of British Orienteering in delivering this strategy. There will also be opportunities for directors who wish to do so to take on additional responsibilities that match their interests and expertise. Board meetings take place four times per year, on a mix of weekdays and Saturdays, and currently alternate between Birmingham, Manchester and London, with further business conducted by email or teleconference between meetings.

These roles are voluntary and unpaid, although reasonable expenses (such as travel to board meetings) will be reimbursed. To function effectively, the board needs directors from across the orienteering community, and nominations for election are welcome from all adult members of British Orienteering. The board would particularly welcome nominations from groups which are currently underrepresented on the board, including women, and people from Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland. If you wish to discuss becoming a director or would like to find out more about what is involved, please contact Peter Hart (


Nominations must be submitted by 17:00, Thursday, 11th June 2020.

Voting - How do I vote?

In the light of the current COVID-19 pandemic, we strongly encourage you to consider ensuring your vote is counted by submission of the proxy form online or by post further details will be distributed with the AGM papers. However, a voting on the day system will be enabled.

Members will receive an invitation to vote in advance of the British Orienteering AGM by email from Mi-Voice, an independent organisation, who are supporting British Orienteering with the process.

On or before Friday, 10th July 2020 you will soon receive your AGM email which will include the Agenda, and Voting by Proxy process from the email address: with instructions on how to participate. This information will also be posted on the British Orienteering website. If the email does not arrive in your inbox please ensure that you check your junk folder.

If you are unable to locate your AGM email please contact Mi-Voice, by telephone (+44) 023 8076 3987 or email

AGM voting electronically will close at 17:00 on Thursday, 30th July 2020.