Club News February 2024

Some of the 50 runners in our CompassSport Cup Heat at Brereton Spurs in February

Welcome to our February Newstrack magazine. It was nice to hear that Newstrack won a CompassSport Newsletter of the Year Award in 2023, despite the transition to online only – so a HUGE thank you for all your contributions!

Thanks too to everyone who has helped at an event this year. Our Registration Team Leader, Amanda Price, has written an article celebrating volunteering in the club – a great way to make friends and find out how events work! (Do follow the link in the article if you’d like to offer your services on a help team.)

Nicky Hart sent in this link to a 1974 Guardian article about a first try at orienteering in Kent!

Hope you enjoy reading about DVO members have been getting up to over the winter, and wishing you orienteering success in the spring! Newstrack will do another round-up in May.

Sal Chaffey, Newstrack Editor

Contents – March Club News

DVO comes 3rd in CompassSport Cup Heat at Cannock Chase

Christine our Club Captain recruited some 50 runners to compete at Brereton Spurs and Chetwynd Coppice on Feb 18th, a sunny day but very muddy in field and forest.

“There was a great atmosphere in the club tent reflecting DVO’s very special mix of friendship, fun and competitive spirit. Many thanks to Mike for again putting up the tent and to Sal and Ann-Marie for the delicious cakes.

“After all the recent rain the mostly dry day was a blessing for the runners and the organisers.  One of the significant challenges of the day was parking but everyone got in and out again. Andy and I only needed a little push to get out of the field!!!

“OD were the clear winners but only 11 points separated the next 3 clubs, so I feel our 3rd place was a very creditable performance. The results were:

  1. OD 2385
  2. NGOC 2353
  3. DVO 2348
  4. HOC 2342
  5. MDOC 1969

“Well done to our 25 scoring runners and particular congratulations to our three 100 point scorers:  Jake, Imogen and Sal. It’s great to see Imogen, one of our newest club members, doing so well. The 25 scoring runners were:

“And looking forwards, the British Championships closing dates are fast approaching. Please let me know if you would like to run in a relay team. Please send any replies to

Event Officials Needed

If you’d like to have a go at planning or organising, please get in touch with Jane Burgess. Briefly the roles are:

PLANNING – setting the courses using PurplePen software to display the map, measure the courses and add ‘control descriptions’. You will have the support of a more experienced Controller; putting controls out on event day (thankfully, people are always on hand to collect afterwards as you certainly clock up the kms in this role).

ORGANISING – recruiting helpers for small events, or for larger events keeping the Help Team Leaders informed (they recruit helpers at Level C/Regional events and above). Producing a risk assessment with the help of the planner, bringing equipment from the DVO Shed on event day and setting up the assembly area/registration. Putting everything away afterwards and ensuring the takings are banked (our Registration Team Leader provides a cash float). We can provide an experienced mentor to show you the ropes.

There are vacancies for these roles in the summer and beyond, shown in yellow on bellow and on the full Event Officials Table. Do contact Jane if you’d like to plan or organise!

Event Officials Training Day

EMOA is running an event officials’ course for planners, controllers, organisers and mappers on Saturday 12th October. However, some potential Controllers or those who want to take a refresher course may not be available on that date.

I’m running a Grade B and C Controllers’ Course on behalf of SYO on Sunday 24th March.  The course will be highly participative, involve some pre-course reading and exercise and a practical exercise on the day. It will take place at St John’s Church Hall, Abbeydale Road, Sheffield, with the practical exercises virtually across the road in Eccleshall Woods. SYO would like to invite members of EMOA clubs to take part in the course.

The day is open to:

1. Planners who think they might like to be Controllers in the future, even though they may not necessarily meet all the criteria yet. It would also be of use to planners who want to get to grips with the Rules and good practice in planning.

2. Grade C Controllers who would like to upgrade to become a Grade B Controller.

3. Grade B Controllers who would like a refreshers’ course, possibly with the thought of becoming a Grade A Controller in the future.

The pre-requisites around organising and planning are clearly set out in the Rules – British Orienteering – as well as the Event Safety Workshop, which can be done online – British Orienteering

The course will cost £10 and it is normal for the Club to pay this.

Please contact me by Sunday 3rd March if you would like to come on the course or have questions about its appropriateness for you.

Ranald Macdonald

New members

Great to welcome new members to the Club – Simon & Jane Philpott, Adam & Nicola Buxton, Ashley & Kirsty Buxton, Jake Warwick, Susan Oates, Hywel Satherley and Joe Bass. See you soon in forest, park or streets!


MapRuns and MapActive Navigation Course

The stats above show that Night MapRuns have been extremely popular this winter! They resume on Leap Day at Littleover. Remember you can do them afterwards at any time; the folder is UK/Derbyshire/Derwent Valley/Derby Night Series 24.

Our MapActive programme has been designed for MapRunners who want to learn more – amongst others – and will run in May and June. Here are the forthcoming MapRuns:

Tony Seaston – 1938-2024

Sad to report that Tony died on 2nd February this year.  Marion and Tony were our neighbours in Rangemore Close.  Their children, Paul and John, were introduced to orienteering at St Benedict’s School by Roger Wilkinson their geography teacher. When the boys started going to events Tony got bored sitting in the car reading the Sunday paper waiting for them so started going out himself.  Like so many of us he was soon hooked. He then introduced us to the sport and – encouraged by his boys who explained everything to us like the need for each person to have his own tub to keep compass etc (no dibber in those days!) – our boys became hooked and so did we.

Tony became Fixtures Secretary in the days when that role included finding officials for each event. Even after John & Paul left home Tony continued to orienteer, sharing transport with us, with Terry Peach, Rex Bleakman and Tony Berwick. His interest waned when he became hooked on golf!  

But the interest has gone on to another generation with John’s son Ben taking 2nd place in M12 (although only just 10) at the Southern Champs just two days after Tony died. We expect to see John and family at the JK.  And Paul is expecting to compete again at the OMM this year.

Mike Godfree

John Hurley adds:  Tony started as an occasional orienteer and the earliest appearance I can trace is on the Green course at the NOC Thieves Wood event in November 1984.  Later he competed more regularly with respectable results in M50B including a win at the LEI Lawn Wood event in May 1988 and 12th in the British Champs in March 1990.

Tony was the organiser of level C events at Kedleston in 1990, 1991 and 1993, some summer league events and a Night Event at Drum Hill in 2000.

His letter in October 1986 Newstrack warning everybody that son Paul had passed his driving test is interesting.

Marcus moves to Lochearnhead

We were lucky Marcus was able to take part in our CompassSport Cup Heat. His new club will be Forth Valley Orienteers, many-times winners of the said Cup! We all wish him well …

As many of you may know, I’ll be leaving the Peak District at the end of February moving to Lochearnhead, Scotland. Our decision to move stems from a desire to explore new mountains and lochs and to be closer to my now teenage children at university in Scotland. Fortunately, Jen and I have jobs as online coaches that allow us to work remotely, so we seized the opportunity when a house became available in Lochearnhead.

While excited about this new chapter, I’ll miss being part of DVO. Despite being a member for just under three years, I’ve cherished every moment and deeply appreciated the support and camaraderie of the club at the many events I have done.

Reflecting on my time with DVO, I particularly enjoyed the opportunity to plan two events at Birchen Edge and Linacre Reservoir. Not only did this process enhance my orienteering skills, but the guidance and assistance from Richard Parkin and Ranald Macdonald proved indispensable. Moreover, collaborating with other club members during the organisation of these events was a pleasure, and I appreciated getting to know some of you better.

I extend my heartfelt gratitude to all of you who have made me feel welcome. Though I may be leaving, I eagerly anticipate crossing paths with you again at future events, especially those in Scotland. Many thanks, Marcus

Recycling Trip

Ten of us went on the Veolia tour earlier this month. The Mansfield plant (or ‘Materials Recovery Facility’) opened in 2008, runs 18 hours each day and employs 80 staff, 25 on shift at a time. Lesley (the Education Officer) gave an inspiring talk, saying that National Recycling will be introduced by March 2026, meaning consistency across the country at last!

It’s worth sharing some points:

  • You do need to wash tins and jars, to prevent other waste becoming contaminated.
  • If you remove the paper from tins, that can then be recycled separately.
  • Don’t recycle lids as they’re usually a combo of metal and plastic.
  • There is MUCH less landfill these days; waste is burnt at Energy Recovery Facilities of which there are over 50 in the UK.

After the talk we donned our hard hats and went to the viewing platform inside the facility. Rubbish in. Various separation machines, including staff at a conveyor belt. Raw materials out, such as tonne bales of paper and card. One of these saves the equivalent of 17 trees.

Thanks to Lester Evans for this link, where you can find out what happens to recycling in your area of Derbyshire:


Meet Your New Chair: Jane Burgess

If you missed the Open Meeting, you may not know that Jane and Vice-chair Nicky have consulted members and produced an inspiring three-year plan for DVO (link below).

When and where did you first start orienteering?

I’m a very latecomer to orienteering. I met Helen Finlayson in 2011 and she mentioned she orienteered. I said ‘I’d like to orienteer but I don’t run’. I was an asthmatic child and hospitalised when I was 11. The doctor told me I must NEVER RUN so I hadn’t. Until Helen told me to.  She said she ran with a ‘bunch of old ladies’ and I should go with her. The first person I met was the very glamorous Marg Keeling, in short shorts and a pink t-shirt with matching lips and nails. Old ladies, my foot, I thought, but I coped and felt very pleased with myself. The first time I competed, about a week later, I mis-drew my map, got lost and went almost up to my knees in mud. I was hooked.

Do you have any rituals before and/or after your run?

Before: a bit of geeking (get the old map out and leave it on the kitchen table for a week) before I leave home and lots of chatting when I get to the event. It’s so great to see everyone from all the other clubs.

Afterwards: cake.

What’s your most memorable orienteering experience?

Several are memorable. I loved the Sprint at WMOC in Copenhagen a few years ago. It was over 30 degrees when I ran. I was top of the leader board  for about half an hour and so excited. But then I started to tumble and once I’d started, I didn’t stop.  Indoors at the York Indoor Cup in October last year. I’ve never seen so many people stopped, hunched over maps and laughing hysterically. No one had a clue. And my first British at Wharncliffe. Helen took me. I did a Long Orange and thought I would be back in an hour and a half. Wrong. It was two and a half hours. Value for money!

Do you have a SIAC dibber?

Oh yes. Viv used one at an event at Ilam. When the rest of us were getting filthy in a pit and by a stream, Viv just wafted past. It’s not about the seconds you save, its about keeping out of the grot and deep holes, especially in SYO territory.

What do you enjoy doing when you’re not orienteering?

Walking with Rowen, weekends in the campervan with Annie (usually with some orienteering on the Sunday), writing and running three U3A groups. But mostly I enjoy everything about orienteering.

Most memorable O holiday?

Our first overseas trip to Bilbao with a small contingent of DVO members. It would have been perfect if only they had emptied the mobile toilets between Day 1 and Day 2.

Favourite TV or radio show/podcast? 

I haven’t had a TV until recently so it’s all still quite fresh but I am a bit of a Strictly addict. I love the variety on BBC Radio 4 and BBC Sounds makes it all so easy not to miss anything. I love Desert Island Disks and Kirsty Young’s new series Young Again. Oh, and Melvyn Bragg In Our Time. So good to learn so much, and then forget it ten minutes later.

Puzzle Page by David Vincent

Answers to December’s Cryptic Crossword

Fantastic work to all who managed to solve any of the control description crossword clues! I know that several of you attempted them, but only John Hurley was brave enough to submit his entries.

The answers are below. My favourite was 5 across, which of course decoded as “between spurs,
under saddle” – horse.

March Puzzle: Litany of Errors

Another choice of puzzles. The snippets below each show a leg that I ran in 2023 and which caused me a problem. Puzzle choice:
1: identify the locations. However, I know that not everyone retains an encyclopaedic knowledge of all the orienteering areas of the UK, so… puzzle choice.
2: can you divine the error that I made on that leg? The latter will indeed take some divination, since how can you be expected to peer into the confused mess that is often my brain? Still, reasonable answers will score well.

Answers to me by the end of April please:

Future events

Saturday 24 August 2024
Bradford Dale

Sunday 25 August 2024

Monday 26 August 2024
Matlock MapRun

Recent results

Sunday 14 July 2024

Saturday 22 June 2024
Allestree Park

Wednesday 12 June 2024

Routegadget (view routes)

MapRun Results

Join DVO

Derwent Valley Orienteers are a friendly, active club with members throughout Derbyshire.

We welcome new members whatever your experience and can help you learn orienteering and how to improve, either informally or through coaching.

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We’re supported by the Orienteering Foundation

Thanks to a grant from the Orienteering Foundation, our Club is focusing on offering training courses for newcomers and help at local events in the Derby Area and beyond, but open to people from across Derbyshire.