According to the official time estimates it currently takes 61 minutes to get from London to Coventry. Once we've spent £17 billion on creating a new high speed rail link it will still take 61 minutes and you'll have to change trains. Now of course you're wondering why, it we're spending all that money, it will still be so easy to get to Coventry. Surely for that amount we could make it much much harder to get to.
I'm not denying that a North South train line is sorely needed. It took us ages to get from South Bucks all the way North to Hyde Heath. Admittedly this was largely due to putting the wrong postcode in the sat nav, but we wouldn't have that problem if we could have just sat on a train.
Because of this lack of a suitable Marlow - Hyde Heath rail link we arrived late and I didn't get to listen to the hare before setting off. I'm sure it was very erudite and made perfect sense.
When we did set off it was a right into Bray's Lane then down to Bray's Meadow where we turned right into Bray's Green Lane. Since we were nowhere near Bray I can only assume that it is very, very dull working in the town planning department of Aylesbury district council..... now I come to think of it that's probably the very definition of tedium.
To prove (as in test) the rule we then took a left into Walnut Way; maybe they had a temp in that day.
After Walnut Whip Way it was left on Keepers Lane and then back on to Weedon Hill. I'm not sure of the etymology (no that's not insects I just checked) of the name Weedon Hill, but I'm happy to pretend that it's the same reason that Pishill is so called.
So far there wasn't much sign of being in an area of outstanding natural beauty. In fact I was thinking that an urban parkway would brighten the place up no end. Now though we left the road at Weedon Hill Farm and headed across a field down towards Weedonhill Farm. Their postman must have a field day. Perhaps he offended a town planner once - they can be very touchy.
Then it was into the woods and down over the railway (henceforth know as Low Speed 1) and across a windswept field to the A413 (Mid Speed 1 maybe) before tacking back up the same windswept field but at a slightly different angle.
A dash through Ash Grove took us back over the railway (LS1) and was followed by a trot through Lotts Wood and in to (hooray) Bray's Wood. No rhyme for that one, it only encourages Gerry.
Now, according to the HS2 map I have open now, the route we've covered so far would be enclosed in a 'green tunnel' to reduce environmental impact. Of course a 'green tunnel' is not green, nor is it a tunnel. In order to disguise the fact that there's a bloody great train steaming through the countryside they've come up with the cunning plan of digging a trench down 10m and dropping the track into that. I'm sure no one will even notice it. The width of the HS2 track with it's 'no-vegetation' buffer zone is 72m, that's wider than the pitch at Wembley (if there's any new hashers who haven't heard the GMs Wembley stories yet, now would be a good time to buy him a beer and settle in for the evening).
There are some concerns about how wildlife will migrate across such a wide track. I myself am slightly worried about whether some the hash could make it across that distance without stopping for a moan.
Back on the hash we took a left down Chalk Lane, past what on the OS map says is a 'Castle Tower. Motte and Bailey' but in reality is some posh houses and a muddy field. Then a run alongside the LS1 track and up into Mantle's Wood. A long haul up through the wood and across the field took us back up to Hyde Heath Road and the on in.
At the end I had 7.3 miles clocked. At the estimated cost of HS2 per mile that would make the bill for this evening's hash approximately £1,168 million. And to think that Barney only asks for a quid. What a bargain.