Your Committee headed south across the Welsh border the day before the 2007 100 - en route to Bwlch Y Sarnau (site of checkpoint 10 some 68 miles into the walk). We rendezvoused at New Radnor for a very pleasant saunter up 3 Welsh Nuttalls (one a Marilyn!) surrounding the amazing valley of Harley Dingle. We discovered later that we had actually been on the 100 route during part of our walk.
After arriving at the village Community centre we were welcomed by its chairman and made ourselves at home after partaking of suitable refreshments at a nearby hostelry. The Hall is a partially renovated small
ex-schoolhouse though its new roof and heating made it a cosy base for the weekend.
Saturday morning saw us heading for the Start after setting up the Hall for the following day’s business. It was good to see the walkers setting off in pristine condition, they would look rather different by the time we saw them again! Then off to the Event centre to get instructions and pick up our food supplies.
A hiatus in the afternoon allowed Tony to drag the gang up another Marilyn in warm and sunny conditions.
The evening saw us hard at work preparing pasta salad for the 400 plus expected participants, helped by reinforcements in the form of Paul and Mary, and we were ready and eager to welcome our first guests soon after we opened at 2 am. Frustratingly no one appeared until 4.15 am but after that the time flew as walkers arrived, rested, were fed and watered before leaving for the last 30 long miles.
We were relieved at 10 am by a team from Marches group in rapidly worsening weather. Soggy walkers were increasingly reporting not just heavy rain but rising wind and rapidly dropping temperatures. After a short rest we felt obliged to sample the wild weather and rushed up and down yet another of Tony’s handy Marilyns!
Having confirmed the awful conditions it was a relief to return to the Hall and take over again for the last hour or so before the CP closed. Our sympathy was extended to the tail enders of the 330 plus who passed through the Hall during the 16 hours or so that it was open. It was remarkable to witness the courage of those who were prepared to continue into a second night in such vile weather. We soon forgot about them, however, as we rushed to clear up and get down to the pub before closing time.
The Hall was a very different and quieter place on our return as we sank gratefully into our sleeping bags. The following morning dawned perversely bright and dry enabling us to enjoy a short excursion around the village and actually see some of the immediate environs of our weekend’s abode.
Hail showers chased us into the Hall after exploring the 100 route for a mile or two and convinced us that it was time to pack up and leave Wales to the Welsh again.
All in all it was a satisfying and enjoyable weekend – hard work though probably marginally easier than actually walking the darn thing.