POF22-Pensioner-on-Foot BLOG Day #9

Day 9 – July 30, 2022

Hi guys…here is today’s update on our Day#9 of POF22.

The journey was planned to be 29 miles today but we took a decision overnight to cut it short by just over 2 miles by not going back to where we had left the canal the evening before. We were very close to a new joining point closer to Banbury and we decided to take that option.

So here we go again with our traditional reporting on our evening dining. We were at the Dirt House where we were warmly received by the team there. Wings were the order of the day to kick off. Big Al chose BBQ sauce, I had fiery sauce. Happy to report no adverse effects the following day!

A burger and scampi followed. All good fare and much enjoyed…with the odd lager of course!

Our day’s journey was very straightforward. No difficult points as you can see from below and the distance only amended by the note above.

Sat 30th Cropredy to Oxford
Start Cropredy 8 Red Lion St, Cropredy, Banbury OX17 1PB ///daylight.inflame.corrects
Twyford Rd Banbury 7.4 miles
1st Stop Aynho Rd just after Nell Bridge Lock OX173NY ///straddled.repeated.winner 10 miles
Station Road 17.5 miles
2nd Stop Station road Enslow, Kidlington OX5 3AY ///prancing.undertook.eyelashes 22.7 miles
Banbury Rd 25.7 miles The Highwayman Hotel
Woodstock Road 28.1 miles
Finish Junc Godstow Road Wolvercote, Oxford OX28FD ///issues.rides.bumps 29.3 miles
Stay The Dundas Arms, Kintbury, Hungerford United Kingdom

The day began steadily and it was nice to walk through the town of Banbury so early in the morning. Very quiet and just the odd dog-walker out and about.

Things were great for the first 3 miles through the built-up area of houses and industrial units and then…yep, here we go again.

This was the towpath in front of me. No way back as Big Al was already in front of me and I’d already walked so far already.
So I pushed on and thankfully it only lasted a few hundred metres and all was good again.

Then the walk was really enjoyable and there were some really fine properties set by the side of the canal along the way.

All was proceeding nicely….and then the trouble started…

Alan had sent me a W3W location that meant a first checkpoint at 11 miles. Tea and toast were awaiting me after a good, long first leg.
All was good until I receive a Whatsapp from Big Al saying…

‘Bridge 198 Turn right past parked cars and over the river bridge. Kettle will be on’

Happy days. So I forgot to concentrate on the W3W and started counting bridges. All was going well until I reached Bridge 198, that I thought was unusually further away than I expected.

No sign of Big Al. Actually no sign of any cars either as Bridge 198 was just being used to adjoin two fields. I sent the above snap to Big Al and called him. The conversation was along the lines of ‘where the f*** are you?’ ‘On Bridge 198.’ ‘No you’re not.’ ’Yes I am..’
At which point Big Al looks again at his bridge.
Oh dear…It was only really Bridge 196! He said the sign ‘was a bit dirty’. 😊
I was now more than a mile ahead of him…and the tea and toast.

So we recalibrated and it added another 3 miles before we were able to rendezvous again.

But then turn of good fortune. I bumped into the lovely Thomlinson family and their dog Heidi who very kindly donated to the cause. Thanks so much guys!

And then a further piece of good luck on the longer than usual morning.

This is Bill and Sue who also agreed to donate to the OYF cause. Thank you so much both.

Now if it wasn’t enough that I was now over 14 miles for a first checkpoint of the day, before I could enjoy my sought-after tea and toast, Big Al had happily confirmed that he was at Heyford rail station and all was good.

Well not quite. He hadn’t explained all the detail…

Just what you need on Day#9 and a 14 mile hike. 😊

And Alan had learned from his earlier transgression.
Look at the next snap that he sent me for the next checkpoint at 22 miles. He even marked out the way to get to him…just for the avoidance of doubt! 😊

The next section allowed me to find new donations from new friends. These are the lovely people celebrating Elke’s Birthday. Thanks so much for your support.

The rest of the day finished without issue and it was so good to see the van waiting for me with Big Al ready to drive us over to the Kennet & Avon for the final leg of our adventure.

There was a lovely surprise for me personally at The Dundas Arms in Kintbury, where we took up residence in the car park overnight.
My son Craig, his wife Emma and her sister Grace were waiting to join us for dinner with my two grandsons Austen and Beau.
A lovely surprise.

And just as we were finishing our evening, these two lovely ladies, Gail and Jill made the final ‘in person’ donation of the day. Ladies, thank you both very much!

So the day finished. A total distance of 26.5 miles and not without a lot of laughs and kind donations from some very good people.

Our total this morning stands at £1,904 without Gift Aid and £2,286 with it included. If you haven’t yet done so, please consider to donate whatever amount you can. We know that times are hard just now, but any amount counts.

To all of our supporters of The Ollie Young Foundation, please keep in touch and thanks for any support that you can offer the charity. Nothing is too small, everything is appreciated.

Dale & Alan.