Jack of Herts – Panshanger

Location Panshanger Park is 1000 acres of woodland and open parkland astride the chalk-stream of the Mimram Valley, between Hertford and Welwyn Garden City.  Orienteers will enjoy its variety of terrain from the steep, wooded slopes of the Chisel Shelf to the intricate detail of the depressions in the smaller woods.

The park was owned by the Cowper family and laid out under the direction of Humphrey Repton in the early 19th century.   The mansion was knocked down following the death of Ethel, Baroness Desborough, the last resident owner in 1952; all that remains is the rather ruined orangery.  Together with its lakes, birds,  other wildlife and long-horned cattle, the park is known for the Great Oak, reputed to be the largest maiden (unpollarded) oak in the country.  The longer courses all pass by the orangery and Great Oak.

Parking On one of the estate tracks off Panshanger Lane.  The entrance to the event can be found at what3words ///cult.term.bake. Nearest postcode is SG14 2NJ.
The event will be signed from both the A414 and the B1000 and the entrance gate is on Panshanger Lane midway between these roads.
Please car share if you can, to save fuel and emissions, and to save people having to park off site.Parking is up to 600m from the event centre, Start and Finish are within 100m of the event centre.Off site parking:
Do not park on Panshanger Lane.
Parking is available in and around Moneyhole Park (AL7 2RG) and some in Cole Green village (SG14 2NN), both of which are a 1.5 km walk from the event centre. If using these areas, please be considerate of residents and do not block access to any properties. Parking may also be available at Thieves Lane car park (2.5 km to the east).
Public Transport Panshanger Lane is serviced by the Arriva 401 bus service. The nearest stops are Leys Down or Russett Wood. From the bus stops, walk East through Moneyhole Park and through the woods to arrive at the Panshanger Lane parking entrance (around 1km).

By rail:
Hertford North Station 3km
Hertford East Station 4.6km
Welwyn Garden City Station 5km

Terrain Wooded ridges with contour detail running EW above the wide river valley which contains lakes and open parkland.
Our thanks to Tarmac for giving us access to use the area.
Courses Courses for everybody from beginners of any age to experienced orienteers.

Course Distance Difficulty
White 1.9 km 1: Easy – all along paths, control flags whenever you need to decide to turn.
Yellow 2.7 km 2: Fairly easy – navigate along line features such as paths, walls, streams. Some turns with no control flags.
Orange 3.3 km 3: Moderate – start cutting across country, some controls a bit away from line features.
Light Green 4.1 km 4: Harder – a range of navigational skills needed to find controls on any mapped feature.
Short Green 4.2 km 5: As hard as we can make it on the area.
Green 5.3 km 5: As hard as we can make it on the area.
Blue 7.3 km 5: As hard as we can make it on the area.
Brown 10.0 km 5: As hard as we can make it on the area.
Course Notes Full leg-covering is required for light green and above courses (no shorts).

Seasonal vegetation, including nettles and bracken, not in evidence at previous events held at Panshanger in the spring and winter, may not be mapped.  If you meet the high nettles, you are lost!  If you don’t, praise the planner who has spent so much time and effort nettle-bashing.

Long-horn cattle, sometimes found in the park, have not been seen recently.  If they reappear, warnings will be given at the start. They are reasonably habituated to people but give them space.

Maps 1:10,000 pre-marked maps for all courses on waterproof paper.  This is a new map combining the east and west sections of the park, created by Simon Errington.  For previous events with the individual maps, please consult Routegadget April 2023 (West) and January 2022 (East).

Loose control descriptions will be provided in the start lanes.

Starts Starts will be in blocks:

  • Very early 10:30 – 11:00
  • Early 11:00 – 11:30
  • Middle 11:30 – 12:00
  • Late 12:00 – 12:30

Please try to start within your block so as to reduce queuing. At certain periods, notably very early, helpers will have priority. Your start time on the start list is the beginning of your start block.

SIAC will be enabled. Punch the start and finish; other controls will be in dual contactless / punching mode.

Courses close 14:00. Please start in good time to finish by then.

Entry & Fees Entries are now open via SIEntries

Entries up to midnight on Sunday 8th October:

  • BOF members: Adults £10, Juniors £4
  • Non-members: Adults £12, Juniors £6
Entries from Monday 9th October:

  • BOF members: Adults £12, Juniors £6
  • Non-members: Adults £14, Juniors £8

If you are running as a pair or group you only need to enter once. You’ll get one timing card. Please give all names in the free text “additional runners” box. If you want extra map(s) so that you don’t have to share they are £1 each.

Punching SIAC will be enabled for controls on the course. The start and finish controls will be in punching mode: ensure that you punch the start and finish.

If you need to hire a SIAC (timing chip) the cost is £2.00 and this must be ordered via SIEntries as part of your entry.

Charge for lost SIACs £60.

Results Live information will be available from your smartphone / tablet on www.herts-orienteering.club:

  • List of pre-entered competitors so you can check your entered course, start block and the dibber number you entered with.
  • Live Results and splits updated every few minutes.

Full results will be published on www.herts-orienteering.club and Routegadget as soon as possible after the event.

Dogs Keep under control and clear up behind you.
Facilities Portable toilets will be available.
Please bring your own drinks; there are no refreshment facilities currently on site. The nearest cafe is at Tewinbury Farm Hotel.
Safety Orienteering is an adventure sport. You take part at your own risk and are responsible for your own safety. A full risk assessment has been carried out.

You must go to Download (in Assembly) even if you don’t finish your course. We need to confirm you’re back safely.

First Aid will be available at the Event Centre.

The nearest A&E is TBA

Climbing of fences is strictly forbidden.

Competitors travelling alone are advised to leave something of value that they will not forget at Enquiries (e.g. car keys). All competitors are advised to carry a whistle. In the unlikely event of extreme weather on the day, cagoules may be compulsory and you will be informed by car park marshals and in Assembly. Come prepared.

The area is popular with cyclists, dog walkers and horse riders. Please show them due consideration.

Planner Hugh Wiltshire
Organiser Stu Levene: organiser@herts-orienteering.club
Controller Roger Moulding
The small print

This event is registered with British Orienteering, number 83251.

Orienteering is a great sport for youngsters. If you bring children, please help us to keep to our safeguarding policy and British Orienteering’s photography policy.

Your personal data is used for results and insurance, see our privacy policy.