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(One Of The Last Gentlemen Only Hashes in The World)

Tales from the Crypt (Mike's Basement)

Ex On Pres' Mike Jones asked if we might put a "Tales From the Archives" section on the website. There is fair amount of quite interesting stuff in the various boxes he holds in his basement and he feels the need to drip feed them out into the Hash community. 

Some favoured "traditions" might suffer some bruising like "we have run every week since conception" etc where the truth is rather different but that's no bad thing. The Truth is out there!

#11 What Rules? There are no rules!

“There are no Rules” is a phrase you hear quite often on the Epi H3  in fact our soon to be On Pres says it quite often and many Hashes around the world have it writ large on their websites though most then go on to say what you can expect from running on their Hash, how you are expected to behave, how a trail must be laid and how if they have one the circle will operate. 

But how did this expression come into being and settle nicely into Hash folklore. Well I can answer  that.

However, before I do let me just say something about folklore. In 1980 Clive Wooff 'The Fearless' ( yes I must do one tale on nicknames ) was On Pres and commissioned a Keo Book of Hash Records for the 13th Anniversary of the Hash. He asked that this be an accurate and factual account with every detail listed in it easily verified by reference to an official document contained in the then archives. Derek Tims 'The Camper' was the Joint Master given the task and the book he produced is still in the Archives.

At the start of the book he lists the various documents he has used to pull the factual history together and then ends the intro with these words.

“Hash Oral Tradition    I use this expression advisedly of course, is simply the ancient traditions and mythology of the Episkopi Hash handed down by word of mouth of very olde Hashers. In this category I include ex-Presidents, ex Joint Masters, Five Hundred  Runs or more Hashers, and Blocki the Raincoat, all of whom have a wonderful gift for recalling irrelevancies and inaccuracies . I have made no use of this confused and unreliable source of information.”

However until the arrival of Major Ray Thornton on Cyprus, fresh from helping to found the Kuching Hash in Sarawak no one had any idea what a Hash was, so Ray laid down some simple rules for the Cyprus H3.


The Hash will be male only , there is no place for ladies.

There will be no committees.

The Hash will be run by two Joint Masters who shall  rotate annually (the role of President was honorary at that time).

There will be no elections Joint Masters shall find their replacements.

The Run will take the form of a hare and hounds beginning and ending at a place to be decided by the hares.

The hares will leave up to1 hour before the pack  and the chase is to be laid out with a number of checks each marked with a line of paper.

Runners first at a check will fan out looking for the new trail  allowing slower runners to catch up.

Runners will shout “checking” until one or more of them on finding the new trail  will shout  “ On On”.

It is not a race, runners who by chance happen to be at the front shall assist their less fit fellows by shouting On On at regular intervals allowing them to follow the sound rather than the paper trail.

If the spaces  appear in the following pack those at the front  should slow to a more becoming pace allowing their less fit fellows to catch up.

Hares should mark the end of any false trails laid by marking it with an X in paper cuttings and runners should return to the original trail. 

Dues for drinks at the end of the run must be paid for in advance.

The Joint Masters are happy to discuss any issues outside the scope of these rules, except financial ones, regarding the Hash. However their ruling will be final.


These rules are probably the same as the original rules on the first ever Hash in Kuala Lumpur and are certainly the same as the first post war runs there and as the Honorary President, both Joint Masters and almost all of the pack that ran on the first ever run of the Episkopi branch of Cyprus H3 had come from Dhekelia they are the same rules as on that famous run. 

So where did “no rules” come from? Well when Ian Cumming decided to set up the second ever Hash in Singapore in 1961 he phoned the Joint Master in Kuala Lumpur, John Vincent, to see what the relationship was to be between the two Hashes, and the required reporting protocol. Whether John Vincent  knew it or not, his response established the incredibly enlightened tone of International Hashing that has endured for 59 years. He said something like: "I dunno. Do what the hell you like. Nothing to do with us. Let us know how you get on.”

On On


#10 It started with a Mug? - Hash Connections

Gentlemen Hashers

This weeks Tale from the Crypt was instigated by a query from a former Hashers daughter enquiring about his treasured Epi Hash Mug; Mike our intrepid Hash Historian ably assisted by Pat "Royal" Chapman did some further digging and unearthed some very interesting revelations about the origin of Episkopi Hash harrier's. Read on;

Tale From The Crypt

There was a popular quiz show on TV in the 50s/60s which you might have seen, as I did, where a celebrity panel was faced with three contestants each claiming to do the same job and they  had to guess which one was telling the truth . The climax was always when the announcer said will the real Otolaryngologist step forward please and all three contestants looked first at each other, then all appeared to start to move but finally just one jumped forward to cheers from the audience and  viewers in their living rooms who had guessed right.

Riveting stuff in a time before Simon Cowell and certainly more exciting than What’s My Line which it replaced. What’s that got to do with the Hash archives ?

Well, let me tell you .

A week or so ago On. Pres. sent me email from a lady asking for any information on her father who had run on the Hash from Sept 1969 to July 1971 . She had found a mug he was presented with and wanted some background to it .

I dug out the relevant material from Ye Oldie Cash Book 1968-1972 plus a potted history of the history of Hashing and the Epi Hash with mention of Founder Gris Davies-Scourfield and sent it off. But then a thought occurred to me. Why did Gris start a Hash on Cyprus ? You don’t wake up one morning and say  today I will start a Hash. Nor, unless you have ever run on a few, could a sane person  ever dream up the concept of Hashing ! So had he run on Hashes before ? Well his only posting where  hashing took place during his entire Army career was Malaya in 1951 but he wasn’t in K.L. and as we know Army Intelligence was closing down Hashes during the Emergency not running on them. Perhaps more telling was, he never started another one once he left Cyprus nor indeed had he started one  before he arrived here . So why just Cyprus  I pondered.

Back to the Archives I went, remembering that they also contain  all the Dhekelia Hash run notices as well as various memos and announcements for 1967/8 . The first clue I found was in a poem written as a farewell to a Hasher leaving Dhekelia in July 1967 :

He found that life was madly gay

and work there was aplenty

But what he craved for was to run

before his bones grew benty

A Hash is what we need you chaps

He cried to all and sundry

And so with cries on On On On

We run around on Monday

The Hasher the poem was written for was Colonel Ray Thornton. Who I thought? Then realised he was the Joint Master on the Dhekelia Hash when it first ran on Jan 30th 1967.

The first surprise when I  did a quick search online was that for Interhash he is listed as the Founder of the Dhekelia Hash not Gris . But in a further search I found him as a Joint Master on the Singapore Hash ( founded 1962) from 1964-6. Here was a hasher who had probably run on the Hash attended by one of the Founders of Hashing as we know it, Torch Bennett in Singapore in 1965.

Then the clincher a note in the archives describing the badgering that Ray had given Gris since July 1966 to start a Hash in Cyprus and his final agreement as long as he was made President. So Gris was just the rubber stamp which made much more sense. 

But who was Colonel Ray Thornton as apart from a memo, a poem and some hash details no more was known about the founder of Hashing in Cyprus? 

Another search found him forming the Commando H3 in Plymouth in 1969 the first Hash to be established in the UK . Ah I thought a Royal Marine so off to Pat Chapman I went. Did he know him ? No said Pat but let me check. Back he came a day later. No he wasn’t a Royal Marine.

However Ray next turned up as the founder of the Bicester H3 in 1974. What connection has Bicester to the Armed Forces? A bloody great Ordnance Depot and in 1976 Ray founded the Donnington H3 and again what’s in Donnington. Yes an even bigger Ordnance Depot.

Pat Chapman then put on his deerstalker hat and joined the Royal Logistics Corp retired servicemen website (Cost £10 On. Pres.)  and did a search for a Colonel Ray Thornton. Up came Brigadier R. W. Thornton at his leaving party in 1982 with full details of his career in the Royal Army Ordnance Corp. including his postings to Singapore and Cyprus and the dates.

It was just like the quiz show. Will the real founder of hashing in Cyprus please step forward and into the light stepped Ray Thornton. 

What about the Commando H3? Well Ray had been invited to become Commanding Officer of the newly formed Logistics Regiment, a job he took with alacrity.

A couple of years later the Commando H3 closed down so the crown of the 1st Hash in the UK moved to, yes Ray’s second Hash, Bicester!! 

Further in an amazing coincidence the owner of the mug whose daughter wanted the information that set the search going was also Royal Army Ordnance Corps.

All Ray's Hashes still flourish other than Dhekelia H3 and The Commando H3 including ours for clearly without Ray’s driving force to get Dhekelia going there would not have been an Episkopi H3

On retirement to Cornwall in 1982  our serial Hash founder started the Liskeard  H3 which is still going strong. When I talked to the Joint Masters  they not only remembered Ray but surprised me by telling me he was still very much alive and kicking aged 88 years but now lived with his wife Jules on a smallholding he bought near Oxford.

I’m hoping to get some memories from him for the 3000th run. If only we had known about him for the 50th for at 85 years old the Liskeard people reckon he’d have been here for it.

On, On,



#9 Back to the Trash!

More Hash History from Mike's Basement......

“and so as the little Andrex puppy of time scampers onto the busy dual carriageway of destiny and the extra hot meat vindaloo of fate meets the “Toilet out of order” sign of eternity I thought, like Jack  Horner I would stick in my thumb and pull out a plumb but that’s yours to decide while I just  go stir crazy.

In a time long before Trevor’s Deany told him either I go or you and that bloody Hash shredding machine go which  led  to the introduction of flour. An event, let me say, which was as usual welcomed with open arms by our change loving Hash “over my dead body” “ another slide down the slippery slope to us joining The Other Hash” “ typical of an ex bloody public school toff “ etc etc there was no shredding machine.

In 1967 when the Epi Hash started we were still following the traditions of an old Hare and Hounds Club and laid a paper trail. Said paper was cut up by the hares with scissors into small pieces and scattered along the trail by them from a sack.

In the very early days some hares rather than scattering the paper began to bunch it up in their hands before placing it in nearby bushes but not for long. The hares on run 9 were summoned to appear before one Brigadier Gris Davies-Scourfield Deputy Commander Near East Land Forces in his office who, of course, was also President of the Hash. There they were forcibly torn off a strip (excuse the pun) and left in no doubt that such practise would not occur again.

The number 13 is considered unlucky in many countries and who knows maybe there was just a frisson of anticipation as the Hashers gathered on Monday the 26th of February 1968 for run 13. The RV as often in those early days was outside the house of one of the Hares and this one was at 16 Pembroke Park, Paramali North part of the Officers Married Quarters near Radio Sonde. The trail had been laid in accordance once again with the Brigadier’s instructions and as far as everyone on it knew went off without a hitch.

However another officer out walking his dog on some waste land at the back of his own house a few days later came across pieces of paper fluttering in the breeze and began to gather them up  as he could clearly recognise that the paper pieces were associated with the SBA and were parts he thought of various memos. He tried hard back at home to piece together the memos without success but clearly a man of imagination he got hold of security on the base and told them of his find and his theory as to how they got there. An unknown member of the Hash wrote a poem on hearing of the furore they had caused which is still in the archives:

He gathered some bits and rang up CI

And said he suspected a horrible spy

Who scattered State secrets cunningly round

For agents to gather straight off the ground

The Hash men are staggered and cannot agree

If this is just humour in obnoxious degree

Or just an attempt to prove to us all

The power of paper cut up so small

Those bits were once forms provisioned by Ord

Never completed - ain’t it a fraud

But through those afflictions although it’s a bore

We’ll shout ourselves On and On On some more


On, On,


#8 Competition Time, Who did the Crit?

Mike has set us a bit of a competition while we're self isolating, so whose crit was it? Read the anecdote below and let us know? Can of Keo from Words for the first correct answer!

“ Just when you thought things couldn’t get any worse I’m back with another Tale from the Archives of the Epi Hash so open a Keo and read on :

Various On Pres and Joint Masters have added to the archives over the years and some do it quite inadvertently grabbing a piece of paper as they dash out of the house on a Tuesday on which to jot notes maybe for their Crit or Hash stats for the On Pres or other detritus .This they do and then the piece of paper gets somehow gathered up in the other Hash papers and ends up in the archives to sit there gathering dust until some nosey parker years later starts delving into them.

 So  I thought I would focus on this area today indeed on  just one of those pieces  of paper. This one was tucked into the hashes for January 2004. I’ll get to what was written for the Hash but first the other side of piece of paper which is a page from what is clearly a round robin newsletter written by the Harriet to relatives and friends telling of events in 2003 . I won’t bore with you all the very intimate details imparted , though they will form part of a book I’m writing,  but suffice to say the couple were planning their retirement home and had bought a plot of land in a place called Pissouri on which the Hasher wanted to build a one bedroom goat herders hut and the Harriet a four bedroom mansion . I will, however, just  give you the postscript that the Harriet added  at the end of the newsletter and see if you can guess the owner of this piece of paper :

“As I completed this newsletter ****** has just got up after the Christmas Ball . I left the Mess at 12.30 a.m. . He arrived home at 0630a.m. and woke me up with hot mince pies , a choice of colourful helium balloons tethered to table weights , a bottle of sparkling water and a  Veuve Clique Champagne carton  which he had on his head for a hat !! So nothing changes around here . “

On the business side of the piece of paper from a Hashers point of view are the following notes :

Spirit of Christmas All Gone thank Hares

John Craig etc shirking

Dave Compton found alternative on in

Jack loo paper

Never saw a Hare

Gandhi diet, breath Super calloused fragile mystic hexed by halitosis


The joke also gives the game away doesn’t it .


On, On, from the Basement,


#7 A break from the Basement on the subject of Handshakes!

Whilst not doing a tale from the basement this week am I allowed a thought on handshaking ?

Given both the UK and Italy have advised their populace not to shake hands indeed the Italians have now banned it. It is worth considering what  the gentlemen of the Hash, who let be said are great handshakers especially the On Pres', do instead ?

In 1922 Mussolini came to power in Italy just after the Spanish flu had wiped out some 20 million people worldwide and a considerable number in Italy.

Even back then it was recognised that hand shaking greatly helped spread the disease and Il Duce banned the practice and replaced it with Il Saluto Romano, the Roman Salute , which is achieved by extending the right arm forward at slightly above the right angle to the body with the palm down and fingers together. It is optional to then either say Salve (greetings) or click one heels together or do both.

As an ex On Pres I can see a certain merit in adopting this approach . One can envisage the On Pres rather than doing the rounds at the RV welcoming everyone with an handshake  he  would instead  mount the wooden dais, which was thoughtfully made by (Herr) Bruce for the 50th celebrations and offer the Hash Il Saluto Romano. Members of the Hash would then in unison return the gesture with one or perhaps two or even three separate salutes either shouting salve each time or for variation purposes only, something in another language like say German.

Sieg Heil for some reason comes to mind .

Indeed having drifted quite by accident into another language perhaps the gentlemen members might like to add rather than On Pres something like Mein Führer ?

This new practice would alleviate the need for any handshaking as Hashers could use Il Saluto Romano to greet one  another  and they might also  like to add a swagger stick or say a riding crop to their Hash wardrobe  that could then  be  tapped against the  left leg when giving Il Saluto.

A further benefit to this new approach would be to circumvent the no clapping rule during the Führer’s sorry the On Pres’s Crit.

Instead members , purely for encouragement , could give Il Saluto Romano at any pause whilst papers are being shuffled or punch lines forgotten with  accompanying shouts of encouragement in the German vernacular perhaps .

Anyway it’s just a suggestion that perhaps Il Duce Bollo with his pristine new Italian passport might want to consider implementing this Tuesday!


On, On,


#6 More Ripping Yarns from the Basement!

Last week we left a newly formed Hash House Harriers with a different ethos than other Hare and Hound clubs, that of a focus on non competitive running and plenty of socialising afterwards. They celebrated their 100th run on August 15th 1941 but only completed another 17 runs before the Japanese invaded the Malayan Peninsular. Most of the hashers were part of the volunteer force founded to help defend the Peninsular and several hashers distinguished themselves. Captain Gispert was killed defending Singapore.

It was a year after the end of hostilities when a few of the survivors reassembled at the Selemant Tinggil H3 Club among them “Torch” Bennett who discovered that the bank account the Hash had opened was still in place and put in a claim for war damage on one tin bath, two dozen mugs and two kit bags. The monies received allowed the Club to be revived and the first run was around the racecourse  as the racehorses had all disappeared so the place was deserted.

The Hash was in good shape until the Malaya Emergency  began in 1948 ( and then it fell foul of the curfew and restrictions of a gathering of over 10 persons. The authorities became more and more difficult and by 1951 the hash was experiencing real problems trying to organise any runs at all but life was about to get better.

In July 1951 the hares set off to lay a trail in the Cheras area now a part of greater Kuala Lumpur but then semi-jungle and rubber plantations. With the pack in hot pursuit the hares came across a clearing where some 16 men were sleeping. Recognising them as probable terrorists waiting for the evening to infiltrate K.L. they turned and ran to the nearest police station. The police alerted men of The Suffolk Regiment who asked how they might find the camp. “ Follow the paper trail” came the reply and this they did. Two of the terrorists caught had considerable prices on their heads and as Government employees couldn’t accept bounty payments the non governmental members of the Hash shared out the money. A fair old party was held at the Harper Gilgillan mess on Ampang Road to celebrate this success.

A few days later several members of MI5 (Malaya was still a colony so MI5 not MI6 looked after business there) arrived to chat to the Hashers. They had realised the Hash had valuable detailed local knowledge about many tracks and byways around K.L. and wanted to tap their brains to set up more ambushes.

The Hash was very much flavour of the month with an article appearing in The Times of London and the authorities decided to encourage them rather than close them down.

Dennis Bloodworth was The Observer newspaper’s Far East correspondent from 1954 till 1981. His first book the Eye of The Dragon was a series of reminisces of stories told to him by key players during the Emergency. This is one told to him by a major in an Officer’s Mess in 1955.

“We settled into our ambush positions in the jungle," the major told me, wiping the beer from his bristle, “automatic weapons trained on the path, and waited for the Communists to come. Suddenly we heard quick light steps up the track and” – he paused, banging his pewter tankard down on his knee with restrained violence – “hang it if fifteen chaps in vests and running shorts from a local club called the Hash House Harriers didn’t come trotting past as if they were on Hampstead Heath.”


Marvellous isn’t it?

 I’ll give you all  a break for a couple of weeks then I'll delve into our own early records.


On, On,


#5 Back in the Basement!

The Chinese Nationalist government closed down the Shanghai Hare and Hound Club in 1928 which is probably just as well as otherwise, who knows, we might all have needed to have a horse to go hashing.

But this from The Malay Mail April 19 1932 keeps us  on track , “36 turned out on Sunday for the final run this season of the Kuala Lumpur Harriers. The hares were greatly helped just after the start by monsoon rains arriving to wash away part of the trail they had laid before the hunt set off and throughout the run especially around Pudu Hill the hunters found it difficult to chase the hares down .“ There were several well organised  Hare and Hound or Harriers as they were called operating in Malaya. The Kinta Harriers that sprang up around the tinfield in Ipoh were probably the earliest being  set up in 1913.There were also loosely knit groups of keen runners one such being in Johore Bahru.

Frederick “Tommy” Thomson recalled joining the group in 1932 and was quite candid as to the real start of hashing . “We hunted human hares and we mainly used The Civil Service Club in J.B. in fact we started the hash there in 1932. Then we started another one in Malacca, the Springett Harriers a year later. Kualar Lumpur came much later.”  

The Springett Harriers was a bastion of the Malay Civil Service but Albert Stephen Gispert , a chartered accountant often ran with them . Young expat  bachelors in the various Malayan towns in those days had their own mess where they slept, ate and drank. The monotony of the food menu in some messes or houses was such that the bachelors called everything they ate there hash rather than by the supposed name and such houses became know as hash houses.

One such was the Civil Service Club in J.B. another the Selangor Club Chambers and I could, of course, now just say and the rest is history but perhaps first an insight written by C.H. Lee in 1958 .

“Gispert" was the real driver and founder of the Hash House Harriers as we now know it - a man of great charm and wit, he would be delighted to know that the harriers are still going strong. He was not an athlete and he laid great stress on the subsequent refreshment rather than pure but austere, as he saw it, running. Our hash was non- competitive and abounded in slow packs. Life was conservative rather than competitive and celebrations were often.“ Sounds a bit familiar doesn’t it.

Next week the Malayan Emergency and how the Hash was saved from extinction.

On, On,


#4 The Origin of the Trash!

For those of you who will be fortunate enough to be able to run on this upcoming Tuesday’s Run ( I’m one of the Hares hence the ad)  you might as you walk or trot around the trail like to think about how it is you come to be out on a Tuesday doing said walking or trotting whilst following a trail.

Well it all started in 1819 at Shrewsbury School one of the original 8 Public Schools, fees by the way are £13280 a term, with the forming of The Royal Shrewsbury Hunt . Two boys ( foxes) were selected to lay a paper trail which the rest of the School ( the hounds) followed in the hope of chasing down the foxes ( the kill) . If the hounds were unsuccessful the course was about 10 miles long laid mainly over rough  farmland. Quickly other Public schools followed their example and set up similar clubs. Rugby School of “ he picked up the ball and ran” fame having the most famous run called The Crick.

1868 saw the first  adult club The Thames Hare and Hounds Club  on Wimbledon Common established not by the wombles but by rowers from Thames Rowing Club who wanted to stay fit in the winter.

Hare and Hounds being quite a mouthful many Clubs  became just the Harriers.  However in parts of the British Empire , mainly the Malay Peninsular and China where the sport was prevalent Hare and Hounds was still very much used .

The Shanghai Hare and Hounds Club established circa 1880 was famous for the hounds being on horseback whilst still following a paper trail laid by running hares who one presumes had more than a 15 minute head start. They are also famous for refusing to cancel their hunt in August 1927 despite a battle taking place over their laid course between the Shanghai  Defence Forces lead by British troops of the Punjab Regiment and The Chinese Nationalists Army . Both side complained to there respective consular officials and the Club was reprimanded despite a spirited defence arguing that they had been holding a weekly hare and hounds meeting for 40+ years on that land so  long before the two opposing sides decided to have a battle there and that unlike the two warring sides they had always paid for any damage done to land, crops , houses or local residents and would continue to do so.

Next week Malaya .

On, On,


#3 Tales from Mike's Basement!

When we left the newly formed Episkopi Hash House Harriers a few weeks ago ( I went to the UK ) the Hash had just put out what might have been it’s first notice advising  the run details for the  November 13th 1967 run. In answer to a few queries, there is mention in the Archives of Gris’s move being delayed and this historian is trying to find out more from the SBA archives as this would explain the long gap between the move of the Dhekelia hashers apart from Gris and the start date. Though personally if that run notice was the first ever run then clearly marketing was not a talent possessed by either of the joint masters nor the President.

Perhaps therefore it is not a surprise that recruiting hashers was as slow as it is today ! However the first year was a great year for firsts  20th Nov first run in Happy Valley, 27th Nov first run cancelled ( lack of numbers) , 4th December first run in South Paramali , 11th Dec first run along the Paramali Track, 18th Dec first run at Curium Hill .

The average number of runners on each hash was just 12 and there were but 25 members in total by the end of November 1968 . Indeed they only found another 5 members by the end of 1969 and after a few minor rises still found themselves by November 1975 back to  just 29 members and an average of only13 turning up to run.

The year Nov ’67- Nov ’68 saw just 47 runs take place and in 1969-69 just 48 runs . However the Hash in those days ran on a Monday and if a Bank Holiday fell on a Monday there was no run as everyone had a holiday. It took On. Pres  Tank Sherman ‘ The Stickler ‘ ( more on these nicknames in a later Tale) to change it to Thursday following complaints from the RAF members that Monday was supposed to be a full working day for everyone whilst  Thursday was an afternoon off but clearly the Army could take any afternoon off so let’s move it.

Those 12 hashers each week in 1967/8  consumed 452 large  bottles of Keo and 112 large bottles of  Carlsberg  (oh dear yes I’m sorry purists but Carlsberg was happily consumed for many years ) and the mathematicians amongst you will quickly realise that that is just one bottle per hasher per run !!

No wonder they were struggling to find new members as what on earth  had happened to the Hash’s " runners with a drinking problem" tag line !! These guys were almost teetotallers !!

Next week we will add some more grist ( almost a pun)  to the mill on the history of Hashing.


On, On,


#2 No Mountaineering! Pat Chapman won't like this.

Was this the  document that launched 3000 hashes ? ( with apologies to Christopher Marlowe’s Doctor Faust line about Helen of Troy ).

The first run (?) was located at Episkopi Air Strip . The Hares were Andrew Scobie and Alex Cadman who took along his dog Shandy. The President Brigadier Gris Davies-Scourfield C.B.E. M.C. Ran out from the gates of Episkopi in the photo everyone had seen . He was very used to getting out of camps as in 1940 after being wounded 4 times during the defence of Calais he was captured  and taken to a POW camp in Laufen Bavaria which he quickly tunnelled out of but was captured and taken to a Stalag X11 at Poznan . This he escaped from through the front gates in June 1941 by hiding in a cart. Captured again his reward was being taken to Colditz Castle which he then duly escaped from again through the front gates  hidden in yet  another cart. He was nothing if not persistent . Captured again trying to cross into Holland with forged papers he served the rest of the war on the Escape  Committee at Colditz. As On Pres' I bet his Crits were interesting! 

But as you look closely at the run notice your eyes like so many before you will quickly alight on the  line: “ Start will be at 1600hrs ( NOT 1630hrs) at Episkopi Airstrip “ .

Now this notice has nothing to suggest it is any thing other than the original notice about a H3 run . Nothing on it says it is an amendment or a re-issue it is just a piece paper that would have turned up in your in-tray as a serving officer. So what about ( NOT 1630hrs ) . Surely say many an ex On Pres there must have been previous runs that were run at 1630hrs and this one was the first to be run at 1600hrs and the change merely reflects the fact that it was getting darker so to be able to do a 45min run the start time needed to move forward 30 minutes. 

Could it be that this then perhaps was just the first run on which Gris took part in or as ex On Pres' Cmdr. “Tank” Sherman RN  suggests in a paper was it that the two hashes Dhekelia and Episkopi for a time ran as two Divisions of one single Hash called the Cyprus H3 and used the same run numbers especially as all of the Episkopi Hashers had started the Dhekelia Hash in January and already had runs credited . This single Hash and two divisions  was Gris’s original plan but on Nov 13th he realised it was unworkable and pointless and the two separated into two individual hashes ? 

Oh boy will we ever know ? Looking at the ages of the Hashers in that original photo there must be a few still alive . If only we could ask them. 

 In our next instalment in February, we'll be taking a look at how the struggling Epi H3 moved forward .

#1 Origin of the Species!


Take this first one, the notice of a Hash General Meeting on June 12th 1967 to decide on the appointment of 2 Joint Masters for the newly forming Episkopi  H3 Division as well as voting in a new President for Dhekelia.

Innocent enough you might think but many an On Pres has carefully studied the wording of this memo over the years and many a thought has been formulated. 

The key phrases are " a few months " and " The appointment of a new President for Dhekelia" 

A " few months ... before the division " must mean just that so the memo written in early June means the move must have taken place either in say August or early September 1967. 

The new President for Dhekelia must infer that  Gris was moving at the same time as the main body that included  the new branch of Episkopi H3 to Episkopi Garrison otherwise why replace him on June 12th ? 

So many an On. Pres in the past has wondered aloud that if new JMs for Episkopi H3  were already in place by June24th  and the founder of the Hash and the new President of Episkopi H3 was moving with the main body in say late August why didn't the new Hash start running until November 13th 1967 ? Or,  maybe they did ?

 Next weeks thrilling instalment adds some meat to this bone!